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July 24, 2014
• Sporting Park, Kansas City, Kansas
Referee: D. Fitzgerald
• Attendance: 18484
C. Sapong 30'
B. Zuculini 3'
D. Boyata 45'
A. Kolarov 72'
K. Iheanacho 88'
That's it from me, Harry Slavin. We have plenty more pre-season action to bring you over the next few weeks so be sure to stay tuned for more games from the US and elsewhere. Until next time though, it's bye for now!
FULL TIMEL SPORTING KANSAS 1-4 MAN CITY. A comfortable win in the end for Pellegrini's men, with trialist Kelechi Iheanacho stealing the headlines with a powerful display and a well deserved goal. It's been a good night for City's youngsters, with Zuculini and Rekik also impressing.
90' + 3'
Yellow Card Salvatore Zizzo
90' + 3'
90' + 2'
Zizzo takes out Guidetti and picks up the third booking of the evening. Into the final few second now.
We are into three minutes of added time at the end of this one. It hasn't really caught the imagination in the second half, and City, like all good sides, have ground out a comfortable victory.
Assist Jesús Navas González
Goal Kelechi Iheanacho
GOOAAALLL!!! KELECHI IHEANACHO GETS HIS GOAL!!! He has been City's best player this evening and he's not even their player yet! The Nigerina Iheanacho connects sweetly with a cut-back form Navas and sends the ball low into the corner from the edge of the area to put the icing on a top performance. If I were Pellegrini, I wouldn't be leaving Sporting Park without his signature.
Kolarov is looking a little tired and Kansas have notice it. Zizzo is seeing a fair bit of the ball down the right but he hasn't been able to make the most of a flagging Serbian so far.
The crowd has been confirmed at a 18,484 which is just under capacity. A tremendous effort from the Americans, who haven't stopped getting behind their side all evening.
Dovale and Bieler both have chances to attack the City box from the right-hand side but neither can find a way past Caballero. The hosts just seem to be running out of ideas a little now.
A low cross from the left finds Guidetti at the back post. He sells the final defender a sweet dummy but just can't quite get his right foot behind the shot and he scuffs his shot, putting it wide of the target.
Jesus Navas hasn't stopped running all evening and he gets to the bye-line once again here, but his cut-back is cleared before it can reach the onrushing Garcia. Kansas are on the verge of their first defeat to Premier League opposition - unless of course they can produce a miraculous turnaround.
We are into the final 15 minutes now and Manchester City look in control now. They have a couple of players now actively looking to get on the scoresheet and a tiring Kansas side is leaving plenty of space down both flanks. Can Pellegrini's side capitalise?
Pellegrini makes another change as goalscorer Zuculini makes way and Emyr Huws comes on in his place. Nastasic is also brought on, while Kafari - after coming on as a sub himself - makes way for Kansas after giving away the penalty. That's not going to do much for his confidence.
Penalty Goal Aleksandar Kolarov
GOOOAAALLL!!!! KOLAROV SCORES!!! Serb Kolarov keeps his cool and sends substitute keeper Jon Kempin the wrong way. That puts the visitors firmly in the driving seat now.
PENALTY!!! Sinclair is chopped down by Kafari and the referee doesn't hesitate in pointing to the spot. A senseless challenge!
Yellow Card J. Claros
Claros becomes the second player in the book for Kansas. City are just beginning to get back into this.
Great move from Kansas! Sal Zizzo gets in behind City on the right following a some neat passing and his low cross is turned goalwards by Kafari, but his effort is wide of the target.
City freshen things up with a couple of changes as Fernando makes way for Javi Garcia and John Guidetti comes on up top for Jovetic.
A bit more enterprise form Kansas sees them force a corner. It isn't cleared properly and Jimmy Medranda is able to burst into the penalty box unchallenged, although when presented with the chance to shoot, he can only scuff his effort across the face of goal.
We've reached the hour mark and the second half hasn't been quite as open as the first. Both sides are looking to dominate possession rather than force chances. As a result, neither keeper has been tested in this half so far.
Jovetic picks up the ball in space and tries to drive at the heart of the Kansas defence, but a lack of support and incisiveness sees the attack fritter out.
The indication was that the second half would see a 'reserve' Kansas side take to the field, but so fat they're more than holding their own against City. In fact, they've been bossing possession for the last five minutes - the visitors are struggling to get a touch.
Claudio Bieler has taken up the role of the lone striker for Kansas having come on at the break and he almost draws his side level with a diving header, but the Argentine can't quite direct it on target. Kolarov is furious meanwhile, that the flag didn't go up for offside. Replays suggest he has a point.
Jovetic cuts in from the right and takes aim at goal one more, but he drags his shot off target. The Montengrin has had a number of chances this evening but his finishing and decision making has let him down.
A nice touch from Kolarov sees him nutmeg one of the Sporting Kansas sub. He doesn't take too kindly to it and immediately brings down the Serbian for a free kick.
With Kansas changing their entire line up, it's important they settle quickly and fulfill their roles. Already City have threatened to break in numbers and only a poor ball from Jovetic to Navas prevents a clear opening for the tourists.
We are back underway in the second half and it's a new look Kansas side, with all 11 changes made. In contrast, City have made just the one, with Richards coming off and Clichy coming on at full-back.
MAN CITY SUBS: Wright, Lawlor, Clichy, Leigh, Nastasic, Denayer, Garcia, Rodwell, Huws, Guidetti.
Trialist Kelechi Iheanacho looked sharp in those opening 45 minutes but some of the more experienced City players haven looked a little rusty, especially Richards who has struggled at right-back. As it's pre-season we can expect a host of changes at the break. In fact, we can take a look at the replacements Pellegrini has at his disposal just now.
HALF-TIME: SPORTING KANSAS 1-2 MAN CITY. Boyata's header was just about the last touch of the half and has given City a lead they scarcely deserve. The hosts have been the more adventurous going forward but a lack of organisation at the back has been their downfall.
Assist Jesús Navas González
Goal D. Boyata
GOOOAAALLL!!!! BOYATA RESTORES CITY'S LEAD!!! Navas swings in the free kick and Boyata rises above Collin to send a bullet header beyond a hapless Gruenebaum. Cruel on the hosts, that.
Yellow Card Seth Sinovic
Free kick to City and our first yellow card of the evening as Sinovic pulls back Navas after being beaten by the Spaniard all ends up. This is in a prime crossing area.
Jovetic in an onside position again here, but the determination to move the ball to his stronger side robs the Montenegrin of a clear shot on goal and Besler gets back to block the effort.
Lopez delivers another free kick and Besler attacks the ball to knock it back across goal. Luckily for City Rekik is there to hook the ball to safety. The tourists are living dangerously in Kansas!
Pellegrini was smiling wildly earlier on when he was watching Kelechi torment the Kansas defence, but he cuts a different figure now, stroking his chin and pondering heavily. His side have been second best for much of this half.
What a tackle from Collin! I can only imagine Jovetic thought the linesman had his flag up because he has taken an age to hit this shot. So long in fact that Collin gets back to make a miraculous saving tackle. He had a good 15 metres to make up there, the Montenegrin made a real mess of that.
Jovetic will be hoping for more opportunities in a City top this season and he's been given an early chance in pre-season to show what he can do here. So far he's been pretty quiet and a rare moment of magic down the right is quelled with ease by Sinovic.
It hasn't been a great opening half hour for Micah Richards. You can see why City are possibly willing to let him go at this rate, as lapses in concentration have cost his side so far. His performances might also explain why there aren't many sides queuing up to take him off Pellegrini's hands.
Assist Benny Feilhaber
Goal C.J. Sapong
GOOOAAAALLL!!!! KANSAS ARE LEVEL!!!! You have to say it has been coming. The MLS champions draw level as Feilhaber finds Sapong with a deep cross to the far post. The striker is being played onside by Richards and he takes his time to slip the ball beyond the onrushing Caballero.
Good keeping from Gruenebaum again! The keeper has to dive bravely to cut out Sinclair's cross with two in blue waiting for a simple tap in.
Sporting are awarded a free kick in a dangerous area after goalscorer Zuculini is adjudged to handle the ball. The original free kick is straight into the wall but the rebound from Sinovic flashes just over Caballero's bar. The hosts are getting closer here.
Saad is giving RIchards a headache on the left-hand side. The full-back, who has been linked with a move away from the Etihad this summer, is turned inside-out and has to rely on his pace to get back and prevent the cross.
A free kick is deflected into the Manchester City area and a Collin tries to send a looping header beyond Caballero, but the Spanish keeper is ready to react and save the effort.
Hmm, maybe I spoke too soon. Yet more space for Kansas down the right and Sinovic finds Dwyer with his cut-back, the striker sending a rasping drive just wide of Caballero's near post.
Manchester City just beginning to turn the screw here. They had to weather an early storm but they seem to have found their feet now.
Jovetic tries to test Gruenebaum from range but the keeper is behind it. Just moments later Kelechi tries his luck again, and again the keeper is forced to tip it behind - this time over his own crossbar. The Nigerian wonderkid definitely has a shot on him!
Big chance for Kelechi to make his mark! The Nigerian uses his strength to turn the last defender and manages to shift the ball onto his left foot but is denied by Gruenebaum who gets a good hand to the shot to tip it round the post.
Dwyer heads over from the corner and City immediately launch an attack from Caballero's goal kick, Sinclair finding a path to goal but dragging his effort wide of goal.
City may have grabbed the early lead here but Sporting Kansas, backed by a noisy following inside Sporting Park, seem the much more comfortable at the moment. Dwyer is looking lively, skipping past Boyata on the left and forcing another corner.
The ball is in the back of the net but it's been ruled out for offside. Dwyer steals a yard on Rekik and sticks the ball home at the second time of asking after Caballero saves his initial header, but the forward is rightly flagged by the assistant.
A whirlwind start here and neither defence looks particularly settled so far. Manchester City force another corner which Navas swings in. An unconvincing clearance at the front post puts the hosts in danger but City can't make he most of the loose ball in the area.
POST!!! Almost an instant response from Kansas!!! Scott Sinclair is caught just offside moments after City go one ahead, and down the other end C.J Sapong rattles the crossbar with his right-footed effort from inside the penalty area.
Goal Bruno Zuculini
GOOOAALLLL!!! ZUCULINI WITH THE GOAL!!! What a start for City and what a start for the young Argentine. The ball falls into the 21-year-old's path via the boot of Lopez and he slides the ball beyond Gruenebaum, his shot going in off the post.
We are up and running at Sporting Park! City have lined up in their traditional sky blue colours. Kansas are in all-black - and have forced an early corner, but it's cleared by Micah Richards.
The sides are finally out, amid an impressive fireworks display. We are now moments away from kick off!
Kelechi Iheanacho is apparently a trialist for Manchester City at Sporting Park this morning. He was voted player of the tournament at last year's U-17 World Cup and was thought to be close to singing for the Premier League champions back in January, before work permit problems slowed down the deal.
Matt Besler, part of the USA World Cup squad, captains Kansas but fellow international Graham Zusi sits out. It's a strong starting line up for the hosts.
Sporting Kansas' preparations for today's game have been somewhat hindered by an even bigger fixture this weekend, as they take on Toronto. Kansas currently sit top of the Eastern Conference in the MLS and have won five of their last six games. They've also never lost to Premier League side - beating Manchester United and drawing with both Newcastle and Stoke in previous years. A tough tie game for City surely awaits.
Kick off was supposed to be at 0200BST but as yet there is no sign of the game getting underway. It just give me time then to introduce to Manchester City's opponents.
Manuel Pellegrini is set to give youth a chance against the American champions, with Argentine Bruno Zuculini and Nigerian Kelechi Iheanacho both starting, alongside defender Karim Rekik.
MAN CITY XI: Caballero, Richards, Kolarov, Boyata, Rekik, Navas, Fernando, Zuculini, Kelechi, Sinclair, Jovetic.
SPORTING KANSAS XI: Gruenebaum; Juliao, Collin, Besler, Sinovic; Olum, Lopez, Feilhaber; Sapong, Dwyer, Saad.
We are about 15 minutes from kick off and the starting line-ups have been announced so let's take a look at them just now. We'll start with the hosts, Kansas.
This match sees the Barclays Premier League champions take on the MLS champions in a battle for the Champions Shield. It's the first time the trophy has been contested and a winner has to be found at some point. There won't be any extra time though; a draw will see this one go straight to penalties.
City's World Cup stars joined up with the squad today in Kansas, with the likes of Joe Hart and David Silva meeting new team-mate Fernando and Willy Caballero for the first time. None of the players who were on international duty in Brazil start today, but both Caballero and Fernando will be involved at Sporting Park.
City have started their pre-season preparation in earnest and have already completed a mini tour of Scotland, losing to Dundee 2-0 in their opener before bouncing back with a 2-1 win over Hearts at Tynecastle. Now they've made the trip across the Atlantic to take part in this year's International Champions Cup, with MLS champions Kansas their final opponents before the tournament gets underway.
Hello and welcome to live play-by-play coverage as Manchester City get their US tour underway against Sporting Kansas City. I'm Harry Slavin and I'll be here to take you through all the action!
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