Surging Sallói, Sporting KC dominate Rapids

By staff and wire reports
Sporting Kansas City forward Daniel Sallói, right, celebrates with teammate Johnny Russell after scoring a second goal against the Colorado Rapids during the first half of Wednesday's game at Children's Mercy Park. Sallói led Sporting to a 3-1 win.

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — After struggling most of last season, Dániel Sallói is starting to put it together. 

Sallói scored twice, Felipe Hernandez added a goal and Sporting Kansas City never trailed in a 3-1 victory over the Colorado Rapids Wednesday night at Children’s Mercy Park. 

The brace gives Sallói six goals for the season as Sporting Kansas City improved to 6-3-2 and is second to Seattle in the MLS Western Conference with 20 points 

Sporting KC manager Peter Vermes said he had faith that Sallói would turn things around. 

“The first thing is belief. I've never lost belief in him. I've always had belief in him and I've told him that year after year. Even when he wasn't playing at times, it wasn't that I lost belief,” Vermes said. “Sometimes you have to make your own luck. And to make your own luck you do it by working, in this game, on both sides of the ball and keeping your mentality for the team. I think he's done that. Because he's done that, he's been making his own situations and that's why he's scoring the goals that he does.” 

Sallói said his confidence is growing. The 24-year-old Hungarian nearly made it a hat trick in the first half but Colorado goalkeeper William Yarbrough made a spectacular kick save on Sallói’s point blank shot in the 41st minute. 

“Obviously playing with confidence is the key for every player,” Sallói said. “When everything is flowing – goals are coming and assists -– it's growing more and more. You just want to keep going. I wish I would have gotten the hat trick today but I'm obviously very happy for the two goals and the win.” 

Sallói converted on a center from Johnny Russell at 14 minutes to open the scoring. In the 34th, he took a pass from Hernandez and rifled in a short blast. 

The homegrown Hernandez took a give-and-go from Sallói to make it 3-0 at the 64th. 

“It's important when these young guys get their opportunities that they contribute,” Vermes said of Hernandez. “It's one thing to contribute in a meaningful way when you talk about helping the team in playing well. But it's another thing in making sure you help the team in getting three points. I'm happy for him. He scored a goal. It was a good goal. But at the same time, I thought he just played very, very well in the game. That's what we need.” 

Keegan Rosenberry scored for the Rapids (5-3-1, 16 points) in 84th minute, marking Colorado's eighth straight game with a goal.