Talkin' Sports
KUTV.com | Stories - Opara's Goal Lifts Sporting Kansas City To 2-1 Victory Over Real Salt Lake
Sunday, July 21 2013, 01:48 AM MDT
Opara's Goal Lifts Sporting Kansas City To 2-1 Victory Over Real Salt Lake
SANDY, Utah (AP) — Once Sporting Kansas City gained a man advantage over Real Salt Lake, they attacked the box repeatedly, turning broken plays into second chances and doing everything to keep the ball alive.

"We just try and keep it active," defender Ike Opara said. "That's our goal if we can't get the first clean one off."

Opara delivered the final blow himself, scoring in the final minute of stoppage time to give Sporting Kansas City a 2-1 victory over Real Salt Lake on Saturday night.

Soony Saad had a goal in the 68th minute for Sporting KC, which made the most of a man advantage.

Robbie Findley scored in the 56th minute for RSL, which went a man down in the 67th minute when Chris Wingert was shown his second yellow card and ejected from the match. Wingert will sit out against the New York Red Bulls next Saturday, dealing a blow to an already thin RSL backline.

The ejection left RSL coach Jason Kreis fuming after the match because he didn't feel Wingert had committed a foul that warranted another yellow card.

"Chris barely touches the player, he falls down and now we are picking up a second yellow card," Kreis said. "Multiple players on our team went through the exact same thing and weren't picking up yellow cards for the same exact actions — pulling shirts, stopping counter attacks in the first half. The level of consistency tonight was as low as I've ever seen any referee in MLS."

The loss snapped Salt Lake's (11-6-4) unbeaten streak of 12 games across all competitions.

"It just takes any air out of you," midfielder Ned Grabavoy said. "We were in a position there to at least get a point under some tough circumstances. Basically (they score) the last play of the game off a set piece. It's obviously frustrating."

Sporting KC (10-5-6) is unbeaten in nine of its last 10 games.

Saad put a shot home after Wingert went off. Claudio Bieler latched onto a ball that bounced around in front of RSL's goalmouth and headed it over to Saad. He got a foot on it, spun around and threaded it inside the right post for the equalizer.

Opara finished things off deep into stoppage time when Graham Zusi delivered a cross to him off a corner kick. He headed the ball straight down the center of the box for the winner.

"We got chance after chance after chance off set pieces and long throws," Opara said. "You have to have that confidence you're going to get one opportunity."

Physical play on both sides set the tone during the first half. The intensity did not let up after halftime. Salt Lake and Kansas City combined for seven yellow cards as both teams piled up a mountain of fouls.

Salt Lake finally broke through with Findley's goal. Javier Morales chipped a free kick into the box and Sporting KC goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen charged forward to grab the ball out of the air. It bounced off his fingertips and Findley got under the ball behind him and headed it home.

Sporting KC couldn't get things going during the first half, but nearly broke through in the 49th minute when Saad and Opara each had a near-miss at a goal in succession.

Saad unleashed a shot from the left side of the box, only to have Salt Lake goalkeeper Jeff Atinella dive left and push the ball away with his fingertips. That led to a corner kick and a cross from Zusi to Opara inside the 6-yard box. Opara fired off a point-blank header, but Joao Plata blocked it off the line near the right post.

"There's not many teams that go on the road and press high up the field like we did tonight," Sporting KC coach Peter Vermes said. "I thought that was a really good quality that took them out of their flow a little bit, which helped us over the course of the game."

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.










Opara's Goal Lifts Sporting Kansas City To 2-1 Victory Over Real Salt Lake

Sports Photos & Videos - Submit Your Photos Here


More Talkin Sports Stories

Bobby Wagner Interview: April 23, 2014
Heat go up 2-0, hold off Bobcats 101-97
Mavs roll past Spurs 113-92, even series at 1-1
LaRoche caps Nats comeback for 5-4 win over Angels
Red Sox win 5-1 after Yanks pitcher Pineda ejected
Mets cut down tying run, hold off Cardinals 3-2
Cruz hits 2 homers as Orioles beat Blue Jays 10-8
Jack Nicklaus: State of Sport Awards
Pacers rally past Hawks 101-85 to even series
Ellsbury returns, helps Yanks beat Red Sox 9-3
Cueto pitches Reds by Pirates 4-1
Cabrera homers, Tigers beat White Sox 8-6
Shields, Moustakas lead Royals past Indians 8-2
Rangers beat Flyers 4-1 in Game 3, take 2-1 lead
Tyrone Corbin's Contract Not Renewed by Utah Jazz
Grizzlies beat Thunder 111-105 in OT to tie series
Cabrera hitless in Tigers' 3-1 loss to White Sox
Ramirez, Braun lead Brewers to 4-3 win over Padres
Gattis homers in 10th, Braves beat Marlins 4-2
Real Salt Lake Downs Portland 1-0 to Stay Unbeaten
Knicks Fire Coaching Staff
Several Projected Staters Held Out of Red-White Game
Jazz Win Tiebreaker, Get No. 4 Spot For Lottery
Harang pulled with no-hitter, Braves beat Mets 6-0
Molina's error helps Nationals beat Cardinals 3-1
76ers owner Harris calls 19-win season 'success'
NBA Playoffs Looking More Wide-Open Than Expected
Utah's Rebuilding Season Proves Difficult
Revere's RBI single ifts Phillies over Braves 1-0
Gibson's gem guides Twins past Blue Jays 7-0
Tigers hold on for 7-5 win over Indians
Kouzmanoff, Rangers beat Mariners 8-6
Jaguars release LB Allen after failed physical
Burke's 32 lift Jazz over Wolves in the finale
Punchless Rays go quietly in 3-0 loss to Orioles
Pirates shut out by Reds' Cueto 4-0
Bengals sign punter T.J. Conley
AP Source: Giants sign QB Josh Freeman as backup
Jets sign former Titans RB Chris Johnson
Manchester City Tops Wage Bill Survey
Marlins snap 8-game skid by beating Nats 11-2
Cards pitching shuts down Brewers again 6-1
Dodgers' Wilson activated for game vs. Giants
Leake's HR leads Reds over Pirates 7-5 for split
Knicks pound Nets again as Anthony sits
Kyle Whimpey Interview: April 14, 2014
Young scores 41 to lead Lakers past Jazz, 119-104
Hillsborough: A Tragedy That United a City
Nats Hand Marlins 8th Straight Loss, 9-2
Carter-Williams Leads 76ers Past Celtics, 113-108
Rangers manager ejected for replay dispute
Chen Sharp as Orioles Beat Archer and Rays 7-1
Heat lose 114-93 to Wizards; Pacers get top seed
Bubba Watson Wins Another Green Jacket at Augusta
USU Head Coach Matt Wells On Talkin' Sports
Union Rallies to Tie Real Salt Lake 2-2
Utes Look For Consistency in New Offense
Aggies Look For Individual Improvment During Spring
Ute Gymnasts Prepare For Next Week's NCAA Championships
Former Weber State product Damian Lillard
Advertise with us!

 

Pay It Forward
Fresh Living
Family Matters
Road Trippin
Hooked On Utah

Advertise with us!