Sporting KCSKC

Sporting Kansas City 0, Columbus Crew SC 0 | 2018 MLS Match Recap

In a match pitting two of 2018's early Supporters' Shield contenders, 10-man Columbus Crew SC held on to draw Sporting Kansas City at Children's Mercy Park, leaving both even on points with Atlanta United at the top of the table. Atlanta currently lead on the first tiebreaker, with 8 wins to 7 for both Sporting and Columbus.

Reigning MLS Goalkeeper of the Year Tim Melia both created and bailed himself out of a tough situation in the 41st minute, first fouling Gyasi Zardes in the box while attempting to quash his run, then saving the ensuing penalty kick. Counterpart Zack Steffen shone on the other end, notably turning away Daniel Salloi in the 63rd and setting a Crew SC record for consecutive shutout minutes.

The tide turned just before the half, when a Video Review led to Federico Higuain being shown the red for a stoppage-time foul (45'+6') on Roger Espinoza, leaving Columbus a man down for the remainder.



Three Things 

  • THE BIG PICTURE: A stunning draw – Crew SC played down a man for a half and were peppered throughout – leaves three teams tied atop the Supporters' Shield standings. It won't surprise fans of either team if this turns out to have been a 2018 MLS Cup preview.
  • MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Melia's PK save was brilliant, but Pipa's red card put Columbus on the defensive, even if Sporting couldn't crack Zack Steffen's goalkeeping code. The way they attacked prior made it feel like an away win was within reach.
  • MAN OF THE MATCH: Steffen was dominant, setting and extending a Crew SC record for consecutive shutout minutes and managed to save a point and a piece of the Shield lead despite several strong chances for SKC.

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