KANSAS CITY, KS - AUGUST 21: Kei Kamara #23 of Sporting Kansas City is congratulated by teammates after scoring a first-half goal against D.C. United during an MLS match on August 21, 2011 at LiveStrong Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas. (Photo by G. Newman Lowrance/Getty Images)

D.C. United At Sporting Kansas City: Black-And-Red Struggle In 1-0 Loss

D.C. United make three changes to their lineup ahead of tonight's game against Sporting Kansas City

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D.C. United At Sporting Kansas City: United's Top Three Hopes Take A Hit After 1-0 Loss

D.C. United submitted an improved second-half effort, but couldn't find the net as they fell 1-0 to Sporting Kansas City and saw their hopes of securing one of the top three spots in the Eastern Conference take a moderate hit.

Dwayne De Rosario came on in place of Blake Brettschneider at halftime as Ben Olsen's first substitute of the evening. Not surprisingly, United's quality improved greatly in the second half, and the Canadian international actually had the Black-and-Red's best chance for an equalizer, but his right-footed shot from outside the box sailed high and wide of Jimmy Nielsen's goal in the 52nd minute.

As the half wore on, D.C. United's early energy wore off, and the late substitutions of Marc Buch (for Josh Wolff) and Joseph Ngwenya (for Daniel Woolard) had little effect. By the end of the match, Kansas City was more likely to get a second goal than D.C. United was to equalize. Graham Zusi's 25-yard blast was blocked over the bar by Joe Willis, while Dejan Jakovic was called upon to block a shot off the line 15 minutes from the end.

D.C. United return home to face the Portland Timbers on Saturday. Kick-off is at 7:30 p.m.


D.C. United Vs. Sporting Kansas City: Kei Kamara's Strike Has United Behind At Halftime

D.C. United has looked distinctly second-best in the first half of their big Eastern Conference match-up against Sporting Kansas City, and the scoreboard at halftime reflects that. Kei Kamara's 19th minute strike from the top of the penalty area beat Joe Willis to give the home side a 1-0 halftime lead at LIVESTRONG Sporting Park. 

For the second game in a row, a weak clearance by Daniel Woolard set up the opposition's opener. The left back's header of Omar Bravo's cross from the left-wing only made it as far as Kamara, who took a few seconds to settle the ball before firing into the corner of Willis' net. That goal could easily have been Sporting Kansas City and Kamara's second, rather than their first, but the Sierra Leonean's header from Chance Mayers' right-wing cross smacked squarely against the crossbar in the 16th minute.

For their part, D.C. United didn't record a shot on goal until the 40th minute, though it was a decent chance as Santino Quaranta picked out Blake Brettschneider in the penalty area, but the forward's shot was well saved by Jimmy Nielsen.


D.C. United At Sporting Kansas City: Dwayne De Rosario On The Bench, Joe Willis Starts In Goal

With D.C. United playing its third game in a little more than a week tonight against Sporting Kansas City, Ben Olsen has made three changes to his starting lineup. Joe Willis has recovered enough from his back spasms to get the start in goal, and Santino Quaranta has come into the midfield to replace Stephen King. But most surprisingly, Blake Brettschneider has come in as a second forward in place of Dwayne De Rosario, who will likely see some playing time in the second half. One player who won't see any playing time at all is Charlie Davies, who has been given the night off by Olsen. 

Sporting Kansas City make one change from the team that started Wednesday's 3-1 win over Portland, as Omar Bravo comes back into the side and replaces Milos Stojcev.

Full D.C. United Starting Lineup: Joe Willis (GK), Perry Kitchen, Dejan Jakovic, Brandon McDonald, Daniel Woolard, Andy Najar, Clyde Simms, Santino Quaranta, Chris Pontius, Josh Wolff (Captain), Blake Brettschneider.

Available D.C. United Substitutes: Steve Cronin (GK), Marc Burch, Ethan White, Austin da Luz, Stephen King, Joseph Ngwenya, Dwayne De Rosario.

Sporting Kansas City Starting Lineup: Jimmy Nielsen, Chance Myers, Julio Cesar, Matt Besler, Seth Sinovic, Roger Espinoza, Graham Zusi, Omar Bravo, Kei Kamara, Teal Bunbury, C.J. Sapong.

Available Sporting Kansas City Substitutes: Erik Kronberg (GK), Shavar Thomas, Michael Harrington, Korede Aiyegbusi, Birahim Diop, Milos Stojcev, Soony Saad.


D.C. United At Sporting Kansas City: Black-And-Red In An Eastern Conference Playoff Six-Pointer

A preview of tonight's MLS match between D.C. United and Sporting Kansas City.

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