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Dwyer’s winner helps Sporting KC beat Galaxy to grab final playoff spot

Sporting KC Celebrates Win LA 10242015

For a few minutes Sunday, Sporting KC was on the outside of the MLS Cup Playoffs picture looking in, but after 90 minutes of play, its ticket was punched.

With the San Jose Earthquakes hoping to overtake them in the standings, Sporting KC claimed the sixth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference with a 2-1 win against LA Galaxy.

SKC head coach Peter Vermes decided to keep creative midfielder Benny Feilhaber out of the starting lineup, and the decision to introduce him in the second half provided dividends. Feilhaber’s game-winning assist to Dom Dywer in the 65th minute was his 15th in the MLS regular season.

Despite the important win, the Galaxy finish the season one spot above Sporting KC in the Western Conference and will play the Seattle Sounders in a knockout round meeting, which will take place on Wednesday or Thursday. Sporting KC will play the Portland Timbers on one of those same days.

From the opening whistle, Dywer attempted to cause havoc for the Galaxy, and he forced Donovan Ricketts into an important save approximately half an hour into play.

The first goal of the evening, however, would be the result of a long throw-in. After being headed up in the air twice near the six-yard box, the ball fell to the feet of Chance Myers, who blasted a shot on frame. The ball hit Ellis, who was in an offside position, before the defender subsequently buried the ball into the back of the net during the 38th minute.

The Galaxy created multiple chances during the first half, including a wonderful opportunity for Steven Gerrard to put his name on the scoresheet, but the Liverpool legend could not beat goalkeeper Tim Melia.

Only Irish international Robbie Keane would best Melia, as the 35-year-old striker beat the in-form netminder with a crafty chip in first-half stoppage time. Giovanni Dos Santos slipped a precise pass in behind the Sporting KC back line before Keane scored the Galaxy’s equalizer.

Momentum shifted after the break, though, and the introduction of a key Sporting KC contributor sparked the home side to victory. Feilhaber, who has been instrumental more times than not for Sporting KC this season, entered the game in the second half and would be the one to create the game-winning goal.

The 30-year-old midfielder shielded a defender while surging towards the top of the penalty area, and as more defenders stepped up to stop his run, Feilhaber slipped a perfectly-timed through ball to Dwyer, who finished the opportunity.

Melia would come up with another important save in the dying moments of the match, as Gyasi Zardes blasted a shot on frame in stoppage time, but the 29-year-old’s hands were strong from start to finish.


  1. I’m not done. WTF is up with the Galaxy? What utter rubbish they’re putting on the field. I watched Dwyer’s goal a dozen times. Watch Omar Gonzalez reaction after he gets beat by Feilhaber’s through ball. Dude is walking. Guys walking all over the field. Has Dos Santos ever challenged anyone for the ball ever in his entire career? No wonder he keeps getting shopped from club to club. Gerrard is busy proving that once you’re too old for soccer, it doesn’t matter what league you go to, you’re still too old. Zardes and Lleget look like they’re ready to dominate as the starting midfield for the Minnesota expansion franchise. Only Keane is playing well, and I never thought I’d say this, but I miss the days when Keane was screaming at his teammates to do better. God knows they could use it.

    • When you give up 5 goals at home to Portland, it should be pretty obvious where the problem. is. I’ve never been a fan of Leonardo and if Omar isn’t playing well, they are in deep do-do. In this particular game, when they got into the final third guys like Zardes and Lletget made poor decisions with the ball, hampering several good attacking chances. Right now they look like a team in disarray.

  2. So everyone’s patting SKC on the back after winning the match on a howler of a call by an AR? Trash the Galaxy all you want, and congratulate Sporting on putting up a decent fight and scoring a nice goal in the second half, but that first goal was so blatantly a blown call – come on, SKC, you’re gonna have to do better to still be playing next weekend.

    • It’s not nearly as big of a deal, b/c the SJ loss and other results meant SKC was going to finish in 6th place no matter what. Galaxy fans should still be upset though b/c another point would have them hosting the Sounders instead of the other way around


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