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Sporting KC struggles in attacking third, falls 2-0 to FC Dallas

Sporting Kansas City is now five points below the playoff line in the Western Conference after a 2-0 loss to FC Dallas at Children’s Mercy Park

KANSAS CITY, KAN — It took more than 87 minutes for Sporting Kansas City to get a shot on goal Saturday against FC Dallas. The offensive struggles combined with defensive lapses led the hosts to walk away from Children’s Mercy Park with a 2-0 loss.

A smattering of boos could be heard after the final whistle. Before that, portions of the crowd had already filed out when SKC went down 2-0 midway through the second half.

Both FC Dallas goals came via mistakes from the Sporting KC defense. On the first, Michael Barrios pounced on an errant pass between Kansas City defender Seth Sinvoic and midfielder Gianluca Busio. He slipped it to Dominique Badji, who had an easy finish awaiting him in the 37th minute.

FC Dallas (9-8-5, 32 points) doubled the lead 20 minutes later, again taking advantage of SKC carelessness. Jesús Ferreira chested the ball down in the box and got it to his feet for an attempt. SKC defender Botond Barath tried to poke his foot in to clear the ball, but couldn’t get the full clearance. Ferreira kept at it, and pounced on the ball for another shot, a missile that whizzed past goalkeeper Tim Melia.

“The first one is – we’re trying to play out of the back and we have a bad turnover, the guy makes a good pass and it’s a pretty easy finish,” SKC defender Matt Besler said of FC Dallas’ goals. “The second goal, the ball bounces and it falls right to the guy right at the penalty spot, (and) it’s another fairly easy finish for them.”

Jul 20, 2019; Kansas City, KS, USA; A general view of soccer balls on the field, prior to a game between Sporting Kansas City and FC Dallas at Children's Mercy Park. Mandatory Credit: Peter G. Aiken/USA TODAY Sports

Adding to the defensive lapses was SKC’s offensive woes. They created chance after chance, but couldn’t finish in the attacking third. They didn’t put a shot on frame until the 88th minute, when FC Dallas goalkeeper Jesse González saved a Gerso Fernandes strike. SKC forward Krisztian Nemeth also put one on target in stoppage time.

“If you get chances like we do and you don’t score them, it’s shame on us,” SKC coach Peter Vermes said. “Simple as can be. We had great chances. … The difference is they (FC Dallas) capitalized on two of their chances, and we capitalized on zero.”

With the loss, Sporting KC moved to 6-8-7 on the season, and slipped further away from the playoff line in the Western Conference.

“The way we played, the chances we created, there’s a lot of good things,” Besler said. “But at this point in the season with where we’re at, we need results. So it’s difficult to walk away from that game saying it was a good game from us. I think everybody in this room would have rather gone out and played worse and won the game. … For whatever reason there’s something that’s just not clicking right now.”

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