On Saturday afternoon at CenturyLink Field, the Major League Soccer season will kick off with Sporting Kansas City traveling to face the Seattle Sounders. It's one of the marquee matches of the weekend which features USMNT stars Matt Besler, Graham Zusi, Clint Dempsey, and Brad Evans.
To get you ready for the match, check out the video below as MLSsoccer.com's Dan Haiek and Scouting Report break down the key factors.
Major League Soccer's Dan Haiek and Matt Doyle preview Sporting Kansas City's 2014 MLS regular season with great praise.
Doyle proclaims, "I would be shocked if SKC wasn't in contention for all three trophies, the Shield, MLS Cup and the U.S. Open Cup. They're that good. They're that balanced. They're that deep. This is a really really good team."
Watch the full analysis:
Sporting KC opens the 2014 MLS regular season against the Seattle Sounders FC on Saturday. Sounders play-by-play voice, Ross Fletcher breaks down the matchup between the cross conference foes in the CenturyLink scouting report below.
Sporting Kansas City supporters filled the Charles Wheeler Downtown Airport on Tuesday night as Sporting Takeoff, presented by Ivy Funds, took over Hangar 1. The team's brand new secondary jerseys were unveiled -- and are now available to buy at shop.sportingkc.com while supplies last -- and Matt Besler was introduced as the 2014 team captain.
The Victory Project held a silent auction to raise funds in its mission to help children thrive through challenges, Recycle Your Game collected gently used soccer equipment donations and a handful of fans walked away with once-in-a-lifetime prizes, including a day with the MLS Cup trophy and authentic MLS Cup champions medallions.
Check out all the sights and sounds in the photo slideshow above, as well as the video features below:
Sporting KC unveils new secondary kit
Matt Besler named captain
Peter Vermes addresses the fans
The Sporting KC Show will air tonight on Sports Radio 810 WHB live from #SportingTakeoff. Hosts Callum Williams and Andy Edwards will be joined by Sporting KC goalkeeper Eric Kronberg and Seattle Sounders broadcaster Ross Fletcher. Both guests will preview the upcoming season along with Saturday's season opener against the Sounders (2 p.m. CT, NBC Sports Network).
Tonight's show will air from 7-8 p.m. CT on 810 AM, online at 810WHB.com, and through the 810 WHB App (Android, iOS). You can join the conversation for tonight's show by calling 913-3-810-810 or tweeting your questions to CalWilliamsSKC and @AndyEdMLS.
Photo by USA Today Sports Images
That's a wrap. Sporting Kansas City's 2014 preseason came to a close on Saturday night at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Kissimmee, Fla. and while the team had to settle for a second place finish in the Disney Pro Soccer Classic, Claudio Bieler's 87th minute volley capped off a phenomenal preseason as the Designated Player enters his second MLS campaign in 2014. After leading the team with 11 goals in MLS competition last year, Bieler started 2014 with five goals and six assists in seven preseason appearances.
Check out the full stat sheet below...
Forget about Matt Besler's long throw-ins, did Chance Myers just unveil Sporting KC's new weapon?
Heading into Wednesday's group stage finale against the Montreal Impact (watch live at 7 p.m. CT on SportingKC.com), Sporting Kansas City sits atop Group B with six points following wins over the New York Red Bulls and Fluminense FC U-23's.
|Sporting Kansas City||2||0||0||4||0||4||6|
|New York Red Bulls||1||1||0||3||1||2||3|
|Fluminense FC U-23||0||2||0||0||4||-4||0|
With a win or draw on Wednesday, Sporting Kansas City will advance to Saturday's championship match (live on WatchESPN at 7 p.m. CT) to face Group A winners Columbus. However, Sporting Kansas City could still go through with a loss based on tournament tiebreakers:
IF TWO TEAMS TIE
- Head to head result
- Net goal differential
- Most goals scored
- Least goals allowed
- Minus 1 game point for each red card/send-off
- Coin toss. The team whose home city is first alphabetically will call the coin toss
"If more than two teams are involved in a tie, tiebreaker number 2 (net goal differential) will be used first to rank the teams. If teams are still tied, tiebreaker number 3 (most goals scored) will be used to rank the teams, and so on until a tie is broken. Once a team has been ranked higher or lower, the tiebreaking procedure begins for the remaining tied teams with number 1. If more than two teams are still tied after tie breaker number 5 a coin toss will be held with the odd team being eliminated. The tiebreaking procedure begins for the remaining tied teams with number 1."
Translation? If Sporting KC loses by one and New York wins by one during their respective games on Wednesday, the winner of Group B would utimately come down to the head-to-head result between the two sides -- a tiebreaker that favors the MLS Cup champions courtesy of their 1-0 win over the Supporters' Shield holders last week.
So keep an eye on the scoreline when the New York Red Bulls and Fluminense FC U-23's meet at 2 p.m. CT on Wednesday. A New York victory by a one-goal margin could put the scenario in play for Sporting to take the Group B title should the team slip by a single goal against Montreal later that night.
Sporting Kansas City midfielder Benny Feilhaber was a guest a Monday's edition of MLSsoccer.com's ExtraTime Radio. Feilhaber discussed his time with U.S. Men's National Team during the January camp, winning MLS Cup, his time at UCLA, and the upcoming 2014 season. Monday's episode also features an interview with Columbus defender Michael Parkhurst and discussion of the USMNT's roster for Brazil.
You can listen to Benny's interview on ExtraTime Radio below, which starts around 21:15 of the episode.
Happy birthday, Ike!
Sports Radio 810 WHB host Nate Bukaty is embedded in Sporting Kansas City's preseason training camp in Orlando, Fla. this week. Prior to Wednesday's doubleheader (Sporting KC picked up shutout victories over Eastern Florida State College and the New York Red Bulls), Bukaty sat down with Sporting KC Manager Peter Vermes, central defender Ike Opara and winger Sal Zizzo in his latest round of interviews. For previous podcasts and all the latest from Sporting Kansas City's official radio partner, visit 810whb.com and download the station's free mobile app.