Sporting Kansas City was feeling pretty hard done by the officials after Thursday’s 1-0 loss. It’s hard to blame them. Osvaldo Alonso could have easily seen a second yellow card for his tackle on Benny Feilhaber and Nelson Valdez probably was offside on his game-winning goal.
Still working on Besler offside, but Valdez off by about 1-2'. pic.twitter.com/wBSc86yTtA— SoccerPhotogrammetry (@OffsideModeling) October 28, 2016
But I think Peter Vermes may have been overreaching just a tad when he went on this rant:
“Unfortunately the game was one in which we scored and our guy was onsides, they scored and their guy was offsides,” Vermes said. “Unfortunately [Osvaldo] Alonso for them should’ve been thrown out of the game, which would’ve changed the game. There were three plays within the game that would’ve completely changed the match.
“I will tell you, in my opinion, and for our organization, I think that PRO and Major League Soccer owe our club an absolute apology because this game was taken away from us today.”
Vermes may be waiting awhile for that apology, in part because his case isn’t quite as strong as he seems to think. For one, Matt Besler’s goal was barely “more onside” than Valdez’s.
Besler offside by < 1 foot. Roughly 'half as offside' as Valdez (though offside is really a binary value) #SEAvSKC #MLSCupPlayoffs pic.twitter.com/SZ6Z7tMVFD— SoccerPhotogrammetry (@OffsideModeling) October 28, 2016
And while we’re talking about second yellow cards, there’s a pretty good case to be made that Feilhaber should have been sent off too as Elfath had already warned him twice after picking up earlier fouls (he committed five and didn’t get a yellow card until he went apocalyptic on Elfath).
So maybe this game should have gone to extra time and maybe both teams should have been playing with 10 men. But Sporting KC didn’t exactly have a win ripped away from them. Plus, it’s not like the Sounders haven’t been on the wrong side of some questionable calls in games involving Sporting KC before...
UPDATE: We should also point out that the questionable calls were very much a two-way street.