Every January, when preseason begins, teams dream about taking this type of photo when the eyes of the world are upon you and you get to proclaim yourselves champions of your sport.
Thirteen years ago, the then-Kansas City Wizards -- led by Peter Vermes and Kerry Zavagnin -- realized their dreams. Saturday afternoon at Sporting Park, a new crop of players will take the field looking to etch their names in history. For this week's #TBT, we throw it back to the 2000 Kansas City Wizards, the last major professional sports team in Kansas City to win a league championship.
As Sporting KC gets ready to play their first MLS Cup since 2004, there is, remarkably, only one player on the roster who has been to the League's championship game before.
Enter Paulo Nagamura, the Brazilian midfielder whose return to the pitch has reinvigorated the Sporting KC midfield and helped push them past New England and Houston en route to an Eastern Conference crown. Even more impressive, the former Chivas USA midfielder played 187 minutes in a span of four days in the Eastern Conference semifinals after not seeing the pitch for more than two months due to injury.
So for today's throwback thursday, we look back to November 28, 2011, the day Sporting KC acquired Nagamura and the day that may have seen KC find the missing piece to their playoff puzzle.
Blue knows what to do tomorrow. See you at Sporting Park!
It was 47 years ago today that Peter Joseph Vermes was born in Willingboro, New Jersey. The Sporting KC manager is a pioneer in American soccer as he was part of the 1990 USMNT World Cup squad, one of the first to play overseas in Europe, and played in the inaugural season of Major League Soccer.
For today's Throwback Thursday, we take a look back to the early days of Vermes' soccer career where he was All-American at Rutgers University.
Happy Birthday Pete.
It's about one week until the second leg of the Eastern Conference Championship at Sporting Park but let's take a look back to the first leg at the Houston Dynamo. It was the 29th minute when Houston's Boniek Garcia sent a curling free kick on frame but goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen was up to the task.
Enjoy todays #TGIF which features The White Puma making one of his three saves in the match.
In less than two weeks, Sporting Kansas City will have the opportunity to win their second conference championship in front of their home fans. It was a little more than nine years ago today that Kansas City defeated the Los Angeles Galaxy 2-0 at Arrowhead Stadium to win the Western Conference. 2004 was a memorable season for KC as the team finished with a 14-9-7 record (49 points) and won the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.
Today's Throwback Thursday features KC midfielder Diego Gutierrez lifting the Western Conference Championship trophy.
#SKCnation is made up of the best fans in MLS.
Capacity crowds in 34 straight MLS games. Traveling hundreds for away games. National anthems. Tifos. Pep rallies. Watch parties. Hosting this year's Independent Supporters Council summit. The list goes on.
Which is why we think one of our own belongs in ESPN's Fan Hall of Fame. In its second year, the worldwide leader is looking for three new inductees in 2013. Submit an application -- for yourself or a fellow fan -- online at FanHallofFame.com until Nov. 18. Ten finalists will be announced on Dec. 2.
— ESPN (@espn) November 4, 2013
— Major League Soccer (@MLS) November 8, 2013