Sporting KC vs. Atlanta United: Eventful Second Half Gives Both a Point

Sporting KC vs. Atlanta United
KANSAS CITY, KS - MARCH 18: Benny Feilhaber #10 of Sporting Kansas City celebration with Graham Zusi #8 and Llie Sanchez #6 of Sporting Kansas City after Feilhaber scored a goal outside the penalty box on the San Jose Earthquakes at the 37th minute in the first half at Children's Mercy Park on March 18, 2017 in Kansas City, Kansas. (Photo by Kyle Rivas/Getty Images).

Kansas City, Kansas (August 6th, 2017)- Sporting KC vs. Atlanta United was touted as a heavyweight matchup. Sporting KC came into tonight’s primetime showdown carrying the best defense in the league, while Atlanta United brought in the best offense. They cancelled each other out as a late goal Atlanta goal from a familiar Sporting KC face gave both a well deserved point.

Sporting KC vs. Atlanta United: Eventful Second Half Gives Both a Point

The first half wasn’t entirely something to write home about. The biggest stat-line might have been the fact that Chris Penso had to give Brad Guzan more time wasting warnings than Atlanta United made shot attempts. Neither team got a clean look on goal in the first half, as the one save Guzan had to make was pretty straightforward.

Sporting KC opened the second half the more urgent team and that was partly thanks to the introduction of Benny Feilhaber at the half. Feilhaber replaced debutant, Cristian Lobato, who was virtually nowhere to be seen in the first half. Sporting’s possession in the attacking half was starting to come together, as was the play in the final third.

In the 57th minute, Latif Blessing ventured into the penalty area looking to get around Leandro Gonzalez-Pirez. LGP stretched out an arm, pushing the diminutive forward to the ground. Chris Penso didn’t hesitate one bit in pointing to the spot. Benny Feilhaber stepped up and sent Guzan the other way, giving Sporting KC the 1-0 lead.

It looked like that lead would hold into stoppage time, but Jacob Peterson, former Sporting KC player hopped on a loose ball in the area in stoppage time. He finished neatly past Tim Melia to give Atlanta it’s goal, on only it’s second shot on target. That was the last of the action in the second half.

Sporting Kansas City will take on San Jose Earthquakes at home in their next match. The August 9th matchup will be one half of the US Open Cup Semi-Finals. Atlanta United will take a few weeks off, then resume play against DC United on August 23rd.