KANSAS CITY, KS – Derek Cornelius scored the equalizer in added time to earn Vancouver Whitecaps FC a wild 1-1 road draw versus Sporting Kansas City in a battle of attrition at Children’s Mercy Park on Saturday evening.
Sporting KC were closing in on the full three points in a match that finished with 10 men on each side, but the young Canadian international’s left-footed volley split the spoils between the two clubs.
SKC goalscorer Krisztián Németh was sent off on a straight red card in the 51st minute after a tackle that took out Felipe Martins with a right ankle injury. ‘Caps centre back Doneil Henry limped off the pitch just over 20 minutes later, suffering a left hamstring on a crucial tackle against Johnny Russell, which happened moments after the ‘Caps had used up all three substitutions.
Whitecaps FC, who entered the evening already without Lass Bangoura, Jon Erice, and Yordy Reyna due to injury, looked comfortable to start. Maxime Crépeau continued his recent form, collecting three early saves, and Fredy Montero and Andy Rose threatened with a pair of headers in the first half.
However, it was the home side who would open the scoring in the 37th minute. Benny Feilhaber, who was making his first home appearance since being reacquired by SKC earlier this month, broke up a ‘Caps possession at midfield and sprung Russell on a breakaway. Crépeau stopped the initial shot, but Németh was there to clean it up for the 1-0 lead.
The ‘Caps looked to take advantage after Németh was ejected, but Sporting KC held firm and were in prime position for the victory after the match went back to even-strength with the Henry injury. Cornelius, who came on as a halftime substitute, had other plans, providing the late-match stunner off an Ali Adnan cross. The equalizer gave the 21-year old centre back his first MLS goal.
Whitecaps FC will look to rest and recover quickly as they continue their road trip on Wednesday when they visit New York Red Bulls. Kickoff at Red Bull Arena is at 5 p.m. PT.
WFC Man of the Match: Derek Cornelius
Referee: Tim Ford
37’ – SKC – Krisztián Németh
90’+4’ – VAN – Derek Cornelius (Ali Adnan)
Possession: SKC 46.1% – VAN 53.9%
Shots: SKC 15 – VAN 11
Shots on Goal: SKC 7 – VAN 3
Saves: SKC 2 – VAN 6
Fouls: SKC 12 – VAN 8
Offsides: SKC 1 – VAN 1
Corners: SKC 3 – VAN 3
8’ – VAN – Felipe Martins
56’ – VAN – Inbeom Hwang
62’ – SKC – Kelyn Rowe
87’ – SKC – Tim Melia
90’+5’ – VAN – Lucas Venuto
51’ – SKC – Krisztián Németh
Sporting Kansas City
29.Tim Melia; 14.Nicolas Hasler, 2.Botond Baráth, 5.Matt Besler©, 15.Seth Sinovic; 30.Benny Feilhaber, 6.Ilie Sánchez, 21.Felipe Gutiérrez; 7.Johnny Russell (10.Yohan Croizet 82’), 9.Krisztián Németh, 11.Kelyn Rowe (24.Gedion Zelalem 90’+2’)
Substitutes not used
1.Adrián Zendejas, 16.Graham Smith, 96.Wilson Harris
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
16.Maxime Crépeau; 28.Jake Nerwinski (9.Joaquín Ardaiz 72’), 22.Érik Godoy, 2.Doneil Henry, 53.Ali Adnan; 15.Andy Rose, 8.Felipe Martins (4.Inbeom Hwang 53’), 31.Russell Teibert; 7.Lucas Venuto, 12.Fredy Montero ©, 94.Victor “PC” Giro (13.Derek Cornelius HT)
Substitutes not used
18.Zac MacMath, 23.Scott Sutter, 46.Brett Levis, 50.Theo Bair