Gianluca Busio earns spot on MLS Team of the Week after goal and assist in win

Sporting KC

Sporting Kansas City forward Gianluca Busio dribbles the ball during the second half of an MLS soccer match against the Houston Dynamo Saturday, May 29, 2021, in Kansas City, Kan. Kansas City won 3-1. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — One day after turning 19 years old, Sporting Kansas City midfielder Gianluca Busio put on a career performance in a win against the Houston Dynamo in front of a full capacity crowd at Children’s Mercy Park for the first time in over a year.

“On my birthday, I was thinking about how I could make it an even better one,” Busio said. “I wanted to get on the scoresheet and I did it in a really, really good way. I’m happy with that. I’ve had a good weekend so far.”

Busio scored his second goal of the season on a beautifully struck free kick to tie the game 1-1 in the 51st minute earning himself a spot on Major League Soccer’s Team of the Week.

“What I’m happy about is that people are getting a chance to see what I see every day in that kid and that is that he is not only an incredible talent, but he’s incredibly mature for his age,” SKC manager Peter Vermes said.

The young star’s goal helped open the flood gates as SKC went on to beat the Dynamo 3-2, the third time in a row that the team has scored 3 goals.

Busio provided the assist on the game winner from Gadi Kinda in the 65th minute.

“He plays every game better than his last game,” Kinda said. “I’ve never seen a 19-year-old play like this. I love to see him play. He’s a top-level player.”

Busio’s inclusion in the MLS Team of the Week is the third consecutive week that a Sporting KC player was given the honors. Forward Alan Pulido, who scored a penalty kick in the 61st minute on Saturday, was named for the last two weeks.

“The things that he’s able to pull off on a regular basis and do it consistently is incredible. He’s just got a great attitude,” Vermes said. “I don’t think he gets the recognition that he deserves. He is a fantastic player. He is a great kid. He continues to display what a great soccer player he is every time he steps onto the field.”

The 19-year-old’s performance earned him recognition on Charles Boehms’ Top Young-Player Performances for week 7.

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