MLS Snapshot: Sporting Kansas City 1-0 Toronto FC (video)

Photo credit: Sporting Kansas City / John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

The game in 100 words (or less): As recently as four months ago, you could name no MLS player more fiercely hated in Kansas City than Brad Davis. It’s funny how an offseason trade — and a game-winning goal — can change opinions and endear someone so quickly. That’s the story from Sunday night’s 1-0 victory over Toronto FC at Children’s Mercy Park, as Davis, after 10 seasons with the Houston Dynamo where he tormented the Kansas City faithful numerous times in the MLS Cup Playoffs (and plenty in the regular season, too), assumed the role of instigator, agitator and goal-scoring hero. Within five minutes of coming on at halftime, Davis sparked a painfully dull game to life with mass confrontation after refusing to put the ball out of play with a TFC player on the ground injured. From four total shots taken in the first half (two on target), Davis’ introduction certainly added something to the proceedings and proved the deciding factor. With the victory, Sporting are the only 3-0-0 side to begin the 2016 MLS season.

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Three moments that mattered

62′ — Melia tips Endoh’s breakaway onto the crossbar — Giovinco played Tsubasa Endoh in behind the Sporting backline, putting the rookie striker one on one with Tim Melia, but the Sporting ‘keeper got just enough arm on the ball to tip it onto the crossbar and keep the clean sheet intact.

66′ — Giovinco dances past three in the box, goes just high/wide — Soni Mustivar, Nuno Andre Coelho and Roger Espinoza were all vaguely in the vicinity of Giovinco, but it mattered little as the Atomic Ant skated past all three and eventually lifted a last-ditch effort just high and wide of the far post.

70′ — Davis wins a tackle in the box, dances in on goal, makes it 1-0 — From Kansas City’s arch nemesis, to the hero of the day … Brad Davis, ladies and gentlemen.

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Man of the match: Brad Davis

Goalscorers: Davis (70′)