After a disappointing draw on Tuesday against the San Jose Earthquakes, Minnesota United looked to come back from that draw with a win at home against Sporting Kansas City in Major League Soccer’s Heineken Rivalry Week.
MNUFC moved from the 4-3-3 they used against the ‘Quakes to their primary 4-2-3-1 formation. Hunou would start up top with Dotson, Reynoso, and Finlay backing him. Alonso and Trapp took spots as DM’s with Gasper, Dibassy, Boxall, and Metanire in the back line and Tyler Miller in goal.
Sporting KC dominated the first 20 minutes of play holding well over 60% possession early on in the match. That domination would entirely change when, for the second match in a row, the Loons opponents would be given a straight red for a dangerous studs up tackle.
The question would then be if MNUFC would take advantage, unlike they against San Jose. This however would not happen inside the first 45 minutes, with those last 20ish looking very even between the two sides.
The second half would be much nicer to Minnesota in terms of opportunities, so much so they finished with an xG of 2.7 compared to Kansas City’s 0.8.
However that was stopped by SKC’s Tim Melia, who kept the visitors in the match and held down a clean sheet during an onslaught of shots towards the end of play. And he is really a huge reason why this match ended in a nil-nil draw. No matter what the Loons threw at him, which was quite a bit, he continued to buckle down and keep SKC in the match, even down a man.
Regardless of Melia’s performance, this match is one that seemed eerily similar to the clash against San Jose on Tuesday. Just without the goals or Loons going down early.
Minnesota United will be back in action next Saturday when they travel to the Lone Star State to face Houston Dynamo at BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston, TX. That match kicks off at 7:30 PM and can be seen on Bally Sports North+, The CW Twin Cities, ESPN+, and listened to on SKOR North.
Before that Emanuel Reynoso will represent the Loons in the 2021 MLS All Star Game on Wednesday, August 25th at Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles. The MLS All Stars will face their counterparts from Liga BBVA MX in the 25th edition of the match.