Sporting Kansas City 3, Independiente 0 | Concacaf Champions League Recap
Sporting Kansas City Highlights vs. CAI 2
Highlights: Check out the best moments of Sporting Kansas City 3-0 victory over CAI Panamá #SCCL2019 #SKCvCAIPosted by Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League on Thursday, March 14, 2019
The last Major League Soccer team remaining in the Concacaf Champions League will fight another day as Sporting Kansas City advanced to the semifinals following a 3-0 second leg win over Panamanian side Independiente at Children’s Mercy Park on Thursday night.
Sporting advanced 4-2 on aggregate and will meet CF Monterrey in the semifinals beginning in early April.
After waves of attacks were thwarted by Independiente goalkeeper Jose Guerra’s breathtaking saves over the first 73 minutes, Krisztian Nemeth finally broke through for the MLS side on a stunning volley from the edge of the six-yard box.
Botond Barath latched onto a Johnny Russell corner kick and headed down to Nemeth, who spun and fired home the goal Sporting desperately needed in the 74th minute.
Roger Espinoza added an 81st-minute insurance goal after Russell received a low back-post cross from Gerso and smoothly settled for a sliding Espinoza.
Nemeth then slid in at the edge of the six-yard box and chipped a Gerso cross into the net with four minutes remaining to put the exclamation mark on a dominant win that saw them deservedly advance.
- 74’ — SKC — Krisztian Nemeth
- 81’ — SKC — Roger Espinoza
- 86’ — SKC — Krisztian Nemeth
Sporting Kansas City (4-3-3): Tim Melia -- Seth Sinovic (Rodney Wallace 89'), Matt Besler, Botond Barath, Graham Zusi -- Felipe Gutierrez, Ilie Sanchez, Roger Espinoza -- Daniel Salloi (Gerso 21'), Krisztian Nemeth (Yohan Croizet 89'), Johnny Russell
- THE BIG PICTURE: The pressure was on Sporting KC to get a goal, just one goal, but it seemed the storyline would be about missed chances and frustration on the night. But SKC stuck with it and they are on to the semifinals for the first time in club history.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: For a while, it seemed like that goal would never come and Guerra would be the hero for the Panamanians. But then Nemeth came up with a stroke of brilliance that opened the floodgates and secured a date with Monterrey.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Nemeth came through with the goals when his club needed them most. Russell's performance was also notable: He was a threat throughout the match and although he didn’t score, he had a pair of assists.
- SKC: Sunday, March 17 at Colorado Rapids (9 pm ET | MLS LIVE on ESPN+ in US, on DAZN in Canada)