A late game-winner from Daniel Salloi gave Sporting Kansas City a 2-1 edge over 10-man LAFC on Saturday evening at Children’s Mercy Park, allowing the hosts to clinch a league-leading fifth come-from-behind victory.
Salloi collected a slipped ball from homegrown midfielder Felipe Hernandez in the 87th minute, then delicately curled home his shot to the far corner. The homegrown forward was on the left wing and evaded LAFC goalkeeper Tomas Romero's diving save attempt.
Momentum shifted in Sporting’s direction in the 58th minute after LAFC defender Tristan Blackmon was shown a straight red card for hauling down Salloi as he ran behind the backline. On the ensuing free kick, homegrown midfielder Gianluca Busio rattled the crossbar.
Then in the 61st minute, Sporting equalized via star forward Alan Pulido. LAFC defender Marco Farfan failed to clear Salloi’s cross from the left flank, and the Designated Player made no mistake with a one-timed strike from atop the 18-yard box that evaded Romero.
LAFC opened a 1-0 lead in the 24th minute through Kim Moon-Hwan, as their right wingback sliced home to their near post after cutting back onto his left. José Cifuentes found the offseason signing on the wing, and he beat SKC goalkeeper Tim Melia with a strong effort.
Sporting nearly faced a 2-0 deficit right out of halftime, with Corey Baird redirecting a Moon-Hwan cross toward goal in the 46th minute. But the ex-Real Salt Lake forward’s redirected shot hit Melia in the face, preventing another gut punch.
Before Salloi’s heroics, Sporting’s best chance to snatch a game-winner came in the 78th minute when Graham Zusi crossed for Hernandez. However, his header was launched straight at Romero for a reaction save.
Zusi subbed on in the 40th minute after starting right back Jaylin Lindsey went down with an apparent injury. Sporting suffered another injury concern in the 75th minute when Khiry Shelton replaced Pulido; the Mexican No. 9 was struck in the foot while attempting a volley.
- 24' – LAFC – Kim Moon-Hwan
- 61' – SKC – Alan Pulido
- 87' – SKC – Daniel Salloi
- THE BIG PICTURE: Sporting have made a habit of second-half comebacks, so there was a déjà vu as they look to keep pace with Supporters' Shield leaders Seattle Sounders in the Western Conference. And somewhat quietly, Daniel Salloi now has seven goals and three assists on the year – a major bounceback after he combined for one goal and one assist across the 2019 and 2020 campaigns. Meanwhile, LAFC let another lead slip away. Bob Bradley's team must find a way to see out games.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: LAFC were nearly two-thirds of their way to a road victory, then Tristan Blackmon’s straight red card shifted the game’s tone. The fourth-year defender was exposed in transition after a costly turnover.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: It has to be Daniel Salloi, right? After notching two goals and one assist in a 3-1 win over the Colorado Rapids midweek, the Hungary-born forward completed Sporting's comeback.
- LAFC: Saturday, July 3 at Real Salt Lake | 10 pm ET (MLS LIVE on ESPN+)