Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Sporting KC grabs sole possession of first place in CCL Group 2 with a 2-0 win over CD Olimpia

Sporting Kansas City grabbed sole possession of first place in CONCACAF Champions League Group 2 with a 2-0 win over CD Olimpia Tuesday night in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Soony Saad scored a goal in each half as Sporting KC posted their second consecutive shutout in the tournament.

Sporting KC has two home games remaining in the CCL group stage. The eight teams with the most points in their respective groups at the conclusion of the group stage will advance to the quarterfinals, to be played March 2014.

Saad opened up the scoring for Sporting KC in the 27th minute. Graham Zusi picked up a pass from Benny Feilhaber and split a pair of defenders to find Saad rushing into the Olimpia penalty box. The 21-year-old striker took one touch and placed a left-footed strike past goalkeeper Noel Valladares.

Olimpia's best opportunity came in the 61st minute when Carlos Mejia broke free down the right flank.

The Honduran international one-timed a ball to far post that skipped past goalkeeper Eric Kronberg and out for a goal kick.

Sporting KC doubled their lead minutes later. After Kronberg punched away an Olimpia free kick, Zusi found Dom Dwyer in open space.

The second-year striker picked up the ball 60 yards from goal, raced into the Olimpia 18-yard-box and earned a penalty kick after splitting a pair of defenders. Saad stepped up to the spot and buried the shot past Valladares to give Sporting KC a 2-0 lead.

Saad became the second KC player in club history to score two goals in a competitive international match. Chris Brown was the first to accomplish the feat in the 2001 Copa Merconorte against Barcelona SC.

Olimpia continued to push numbers forward in the second half but was unable to find the back of the net. Kronberg's lone save came in the third minute of stoppage time when Douglas Caetano headed a Brayan Beckeles cross into the chest of the Sporting KC goalkeeper.

Sporting KC's next CCL match is September 17 when they host Real Esteli at Sporting Park. They will conclude the group stage on October 23 with a home match against Olimpia.

Sporting KC returns to league play Saturday when they host the Colorado Rapids. Limited seats are still available and can be purchased at or at the Sporting Park Box Offices.