Fan preview: Sporting KC travel to Columbus

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Sporting Kansas City continue their long road trip to start the season. The next stop is Columbus, Ohio, to take on the yellow-clad Crew April 16. Kick off is 7:30 p.m. ET. Sporting will be without the services of forward Omar Bravo who is out with a sports hernia injury. No matter—Teal Bunbury and C.J. Sapong have been keeping the offense going in his absence.

Having too many scoring threats is a good problem to have. However, the central defense still remains a huge problem for Kansas City. The game plan should be to simply keep the ball away from the back line and dominate the midfield.

Columbus are in the same type of situation as Sporting. They have five points after four games. Their most recent outing was a nil-nil draw to Chivas USA, a team Sporting beat 3-2 in their opening match of the season. However, they did beat FC Dallas and drew with New York.

Columbus have only one loss but have managed only three goals in five games. With a suspect Kansas City defense, Columbus can take advantage of that if they recognize the lapses.

The Crew are coached by Robert Warzycha, one of the most consistent coaches in Major League Soccer. His son Konrad is on Sporting’s roster but is currently hurt and not playing. I’m betting the younger Warzycha will make this road trip even if he doesn’t play. He attended Ohio State and was taken in the draft this year. The rookie has yet to see any minutes this season.

As with any match, Sporting needs a win. They don’t just need a point here. They need to win. The defense should be far enough long to finally stop some players from getting through. Columbus will be unable to score as the KC midfield will control the pace of the game.

Even without Bravo, I look for Sporting to pick up three points with a 2-0 victory. Something has to give, and the Sporting offense will just be too good. With three points, Sporting would vault from seventh place to perhaps second place behind Philadelphia depending upon other outcomes.

William Browning played soccer for ten years growing up in the St. Louis area. He has been a fan of Sporting Kansas City ever since Major League Soccer starting playing in 1996.

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Apr 16th, 2011 | Posted in Travel
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