Sporting Kansas City played an early afternoon preseason match against USL PDL squad FC Tucson and, after a lackluster first half, came out victorious with a ferocious four-goal second half.
This match was not available to be streamed, so we'll make due with a recap based on the SKC Gameday twitter account live updates. They started off with this lineup.
#SportingKC starting XI vs @FCTucson: Marin; Ellis, Anibaba, Palmer-Brown, Sinovic; Carrasco, Nagamura, Espinoza; Peterson, Dwyer, Añor.— Sporting Kansas City (@SportingKC) February 9, 2015
This is the second preseason game that SKC has played a 4-3-3 after rumors that there may be a formation change. This was a bit of a strange midfield with all three of them known for playing holding midfield or box-to-box roles with no clear attacker.
Sporting apparently had the lion's share of the possession but were not able to put any goals into the net. FC Tucson was also scoreless in the first, leading to a halftime draw.
Halftime whistle blows and we'll head into the break scoreless. Great 45-minute shift for #SportingKC. New lineup coming on shortly.— SKC Gameday (@SKCgameday) February 9, 2015
Sporting rolled out a new lineup for the start of the second half, although Erik Palmer-Brown stayed in at centerback.
#SportingKC second-half lineup: Melia; Duke, Marcelin, EPB, Dia; Lopez, Feilhaber, Medranda; Rogers, Nemeth, Hallisey.— SKC Gameday (@SKCgameday) February 9, 2015
This is where things would start to get interesting. FC Tucson got on the board early in the second half, taking a 1-0 lead.
48' @FCTucson grabs a 1-0 lead as Pataia slides a ball across the box and Brooks comes charging in to slot it home for the hosts.— SKC Gameday (@SKCgameday) February 9, 2015
That lead would last for about 12 minutes before Sporting KC got their chance at an equalizer.
PK! Lopez works hard in the box to earn the foul and Nemeth will step up to the spot in the 60th minute.— SKC Gameday (@SKCgameday) February 9, 2015
Nemeth would complete the penalty to put the match at 1-1. It was Nemeth's first goal of the day. The stalemate would not last long, however.
And at the other end, @FCTucson grabs a 2-1 lead as Boggs heads home a long free kick.— SKC Gameday (@SKCgameday) February 9, 2015
Nemeth was back at it just a few moments later, notching the match up at two goals a piece.
75' And we're tied again! Nemeth bags his second of the game with a side-volley off a James Rogers cross. 2-2— SKC Gameday (@SKCgameday) February 9, 2015
Jimmy Medranda would get an assist from Nemeth just a couple of minutes later to give Sporting KC their first lead of the match.
77' GOAL! @jimmymedranda opens his scoring account as Nemeth finds him open at the penalty spot. Medranda calmly places it to the corner 3-2— SKC Gameday (@SKCgameday) February 9, 2015
Nemeth would then put the icing on the cake to complete his hat trick.
Hat trick for Nemeth! Dia finds the Hungarian striker who beats a defender and calmly places the ball into the corner of the net.— SKC Gameday (@SKCgameday) February 9, 2015
Sporting KC would hold on to the two-goal advantage to finish the match with a 4-2 victory.
Who didn't play?
- Matt Besler- With the national team
- Jon Kempin- With the national team
- Chance Myers- Recovering from torn ACL
- Graham Zusi- Recovering from injured foot
- Ike Opara- Recovering from chondral defect in ankle
- Saad Abdul-Salaam- Reason unknown
Sporting KC will open up their participation in the Desert Diamond Cup on Feb. 18 against the Colorado Rapids. The Wednesday evening matchup will be at 6:30 p.m. central and will likely feature the returns of Matt Besler and Jon Kempin after missing the first two preseason matches due to USMNT camp.