Sporting KC Advance to Quarter Finals of CONCACAF Champions League

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Sporting KC
TOLUCA, MEXICO - FEBRUARY 28: Gerso Fernandes (R) of Sporting Kansas City celebrates after scoring the first goal of his team during a round of sixteen second leg match between Toluca and Kansas City as part of CONCACAF Champions League 2019 at Nemesio Diez Stadium on February 28, 2019 in Toluca, Mexico. (Photo by Angel Castillo/Jam Media/Getty Images)

Toluca, Mexico (February 28th, 2019)- Sporting KC rolled to yet another victory over Liga MX opponent, Toluca FC. Their 2-0 win on the night propelled them to a 6-0 series victory on aggregate.

Sporting KC Beat Toluca Again, Move on To Quarterfinals of CCL

Sporting KC took an early lead on Toluca, as Roger Espinoza played a perfect ball over the top to Gerso, who cut back on his defender and slotted home underneath Toluca Goalkeeper, Alfredo Talavera. Sporting’s early goal meant that Toluca would have to score five goals to advance. The early goal also wiped out the possibility of extra time.

Sporting KC held out through some smart defending and really good play out of pressure.

Toluca only posed a serious threat once, as they hit the bar three minutes into the match. A free header off of a corner kick was Toluca’s only serious chance in the match.

Sporting KC extended their lead in the 62nd minute. Krisztian Nemeth was dragged down after skating into the 18 yard box untouched. As the last man, Adrian Mora dragged him down cynically in the box, earning Sporting KC a penalty kick, which Nemeth stepped up and put into the top corner.

Three Things

  • Toluca were miserable, this whole tie. It was so bad that in the second, leg, Toluca fans were “ole’ing” their own players as Sporting KC passed the ball around in possession. They’ve now lost five straight, and have had three players sent off in those five matches.
  • Sporting KC were superb, again. They dominated possession in both legs, and won in every major defensive category despite having such little time without the ball. For a game where they could technically afford to sit back and defend and play on the counter, they came out and played their game, and went and nearly doubled down their first leg result. The mark of a true contender, and team to beat. Also, the beat down was so bad in the second half, that Toluca fans were giving the “Ole” chant to their own team.

  • Sporting KC look to be one of the teams to beat in this competition, as they dispatched one of the early favorites. While they started their series with Toluca as underdogs, they now face one of the biggest underdogs in the tournament, an Independiente side that shocked Toronto FC. The first leg of this series will be next week.

Sporting KC open up MLS play this Sunday against LAFC, at 8:30pm EST.

 

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