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Game Recap: Sporting Kansas City 3, Colorado Rapids 2 in a wild one

The Rapids battled but lost 3-2 in a game of missteps by players and referees alike.

MLS: Colorado Rapids at Sporting Kansas City Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

The Colorado Rapids lost a heartbreaker 3-2 against Sporting Kansas City in a game marred by mistakes from players and referees alike. Let’s get to work:

First half

In the sixth minute, after a great build-up, Kellyn Acosta scores a beauty of a goal from 18 yards out. Acosta trailed the play allowing him space to get one off his left foot past three SKC defenders.

In the 15th minute, SKC had a shot on frame, but Rapids midfielder Jack Price was at the right place at the right time to clear the ball off the line and detonate the threat.

In the 41st minute, Nicolas Benezet was given a yellow but was feared to be a red card due to a hand to the face. Many speculated that this would have been a red card in 2019.

SKC outshot the Rapids 7-6 (3-2 on frame). SKC also had three corners to the Rapids one. The Rapids out-possessed SKC for the first half of the first, but SKC started becoming more of a threat in the second half. Fortunately, the Rapids game plan and execution looked much better than they did against Real Salt Lake.

Second half

Neither team made any substitutions entering the second half.

In the 54th minute, SKC makes their first substitution: Gerso Fernandes came on for Johnny Russell.

The Rapids made their substitution also in the 54th minute: Nicolas Mezquida in for Cole Bassett.

In the 58th minute, Rapids defender Danny Wilson earned a yellow with his foul on SKC’s Khiry Shelton. After a VAR consultation, Wilson earned red for denying a goal-scoring opportunity. So, Auston Trusty came in for Nicolas Benezet to shift to a more defensive formation.

In the 65th minute, SKC’s Shelton equalizes with a goal from a severely acute angle to beat Lalas Abubakar and goalkeeper William Yarborough.

In the 71st minute, a ridiculous handball call on Diego Rubio gave Sporting a penalty kick. Alan Pulido puts his squad up 2-1.

Someone on the Twitterverse insightfully noted:

In the 74th minute, the referee sent off Colorado midfielder Jack Price. The handball rules combined with the minutiae of VAR’s reviews will make MLS an unwatchable game.

Jonathan Lewis, who came on for Younes Namli in the 73rd minute, equalizes in the 85th minute, sending Rapids supporters into near delirium.

In the first minute of stoppage time, SKC goes up 3-2 with a Graham Zusi goal deflecting off Colorado defender Sam Vines. The score held after 12 minutes of stoppage time.


This game was an embarrassment for the referees. The Danny Wilson sending off was understandable, but the referees need to develop some consistency and evaluate this overuse of VAR. The Rapids battled and had a chance to walk away with one point, even down two players. We should be proud of the Rapids play tonight, even with the missteps. This is a different team.

I leave you with Jared Watts: