What a Wednesday: Collapse in Mexico; Electrifying Comebacks in MLS

 

Monterrey 3, Seattle 2

Seattle Sounders FC was pretty much out of the CONCACAF Champions League before the start of last night’s game at Monterrey. Admitting as much, coach Sigi Schmid started a team of reserves.

Yet that group edged to the brink of history, leading Monterrey 2-0 into the 73rd minute, after an own goal by the hosts and a tally by Harvard grad—and former high school teammate of Charlie DaviesMichael Fucito.

(Quick digression here: Fucito, an MLS attacker, was a strike partner in high school with Charlie Davies, the best American striker alive right now—and they went to the tony Brooks School, in North Andover, Massachusetts. Can you imagine how much they must have torn it up against all the Sloanes, Camerons and Winthrops in their conference? All right, back to the game.)

Fucito put Seattle up 2-0 just before halftime, and the Sounders held on to that lead until the 74th minute, 16 minutes away from becoming the first MLS team to claim three points on Mexican soil in a CONCACAF competition.

That was when Seattle defender Zach Scott failed to step up, keeping Monterrey’s Aldo De Nigris onside, and De Nigris headed in a rebound to make it 2-1.

Just three minutes later, Monterrey was ahead 3-2—and that’s the way it ended.

Humberto Suazo scored in the 75th and was taken down in the box in the 77th to set up Luis Perez’s game-winning penalty.

Real Salt Lake 3, Arabe Unido 2

With two goals from Will Johnson and one from Alvaro Saborio, Real Salt Lake overcame an early 1-0 deficit and held on to beat Panama’s Arabe Unido 3-2 to move to the top of Group A in the CCL. The win, their third in four tournament games, makes RSL the first MLS club to win on the road in the group stage of the CCL this year.

• • • 

Major League Soccer saw Monterrey its stunning comeback—and raised it one, as both Dallas and Kansas City staged thrilling rallies from two-goal deficits in front of raucous home crowds.

Kansas City’s fight-back was especially huge, as it kept the Wizards in the playoff hunt.

Dallas 2, New England 2

Say you’re New England—or any MLS team, really—and you’re up 2-0 on Dallas with 10 minutes to play.

Never mind that Dallas is all but assured of a playoff spot and you are all but assured of November tee times: You know what’s going to happen.

That’s right—the game is going to end in a tie, as 12 of Dallas’s 24 games entering this one had done.

Make it 13: David Ferreira drew, then buried, a penalty in the 80th minute (after missing one earlier in the game) and then set up Jeff Cunningham’s stoppage-time equalizer to make it 2-2 and run Dallas’s unbeaten streak to 16 games.

Kansas City 4, Houston 3

After Kansas City’s rugged 2-0 win at Chivas USA last weekend, we said they had “a winnable” mid-week home game against already-out-of-it Houston, and then a showdown with playoff-bound Dallas the following Saturday—after which their postseason prospects would be greatly clarified.

We admit it: we were looking past the Houston game. And for the first 45 minutes last night, Kansas City did the exact same thing.

The look on coach Peter Vermes’s face as his team trailed 3-1 at the break said it all: it was a well-balanced combination of disgust and rage. Houston’s ultra-soft third goal, a tap-in by Adrian Serioux after a weak clearance from the KC backline, was particularly galling.

Kansas City fans must’ve been thinking, Well, maybe we’re not a playoff team after all. If we can’t beat a last-place team, at home, with our postseason hopes on the line, then hey, what more evidence do we need?

But the second half was a different story altogether. Dynamo keeper Pat Onstad did his impression of a grade-schooler’s goal kick, scuffing the ball to KC forward Teal Bunbury, who made a direct deposit into Onstad’s goal to make it 3-2.

Michael Harrington got free on the right in the 72nd minute, torched his defender and chipped in a cross that Ryan Smith side-footed toward goal. It deflected off Serioux and in to make it 3-3.

Substitute Josh Wolff completed the rally in the seventh minute of stoppage time, snapping in a header off another great ball from Harrington on the wing.

Kansas City lives to fight another day—and at 9-9-6 they are just three points out of the last playoff spot.

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One comment on “What a Wednesday: Collapse in Mexico; Electrifying Comebacks in MLS

  1. […] The Wizards are 6-1-3 in their last 10, while Dallas is unbeaten in its last 16. Both teams made stirring comebacks in Week 26 games on Wednesday. […]

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