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.
It was cold. It was dramatic. It was heart-stopping. Regardless of the team you supported, the 2013 MLS Cup Final was a rollercoaster of emotions that kept fans on the edge of their seats.
The latest video from MLS Insider captures that emotion perfectly. It includes never-before-seen footage as well as interviews with representatives from both Sporting KC and Real Salt Lake. Check it out and let us know what you think in the comment section below.
It's been 21 months since Sporting KC grabbed a point at Seattle. It's been even longer since they grabbed three points. The last time Sporting KC came away with a result at CenturyLink Field (then called Qwest Field), Jacob Peterson scored an 8th-minute goal in a 1-1 draw.
One could go so far as to say that broke the Sounders' hex, as Sporting KC faced Seattle two months later and dethroned the three-time defending U.S. Open Cup champions in the championship game.
So for today's TBT, we're throwing it back to that Peterson goal (pictured, right).
Will we see more of the same on Saturday? Tune into NBCSN at 2 p.m. CT for Seattle vs. Sporting KC and the first match of the 2014 MLS season.
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.
Peter Vermes addresses crowd at Sporting Takeoff on Tuesday | USA Today Sports Images
Manager Peter Vermes and his Sporting Kansas City squad depart for Seattle on Thursday afternoon, 48 hours before taking the field against the Sounders on Saturday live on NBCSN. Prior to leading the team through one last training session in Kansas City at the Swope Soccer Village, Vermes joined Fescoe in the Morning on 610 Sports Radio to share his thoughts on the season opener and the 2014 campaign ahead.
"The big thing in this season is that we have a lot of variables to deal with, moreso than we did last year, when you pick and choose who are going to be the guys playing in the upcoming game. It's definitely not going to be easy from the coaching staff's perspective when you look at league play, you look at Champions League which we start next Wednesday here at home, you have U.S. Open Cup, and then we have Champions League again starting in August...and then we have World Cup with some of our guys. There are going to be so many challenges over the course of this season and there are going to be guys that are getting a lot of playing time...and they're going to have to step up and take advantage of those opportunities. They're going to have to be good. That's going to be the biggest challenge for us this year."
Throughout the 10-minute interview, Vermes continued to comment on the team's goals -- both short term and long term -- and the importance of staying "hungry and motivated" after winning MLS Cup. Listen to the full podcast below...
Sporting KC goalkeeper Jon Kempin at the Disney Pro Soccer Classic | Photo by Joe Petro
Sporting Kansas City homegrown goalkeeper Jon Kempin will make a special appearance from 3-4:30 p.m. CT on Friday in conjunction with Kia's programming at the KC Auto Show. If you're going to the annual event -- held at the Bartle Hall Convention Center (301 West 13th St.) in downtown Kansas City -- stop by Kia, an official partner of Sporting Kansas City, to meet Kempin and get your picture taken with the Major League Soccer and USL PRO champion. The Leawood, Kan. native will be signing personalized autographs so be sure to have your Sporting KC gear in hand.
Kempin, 20, started two games for Sporting Kansas City last month at the 2014 Disney Pro Soccer Classic with a clean sheet against Fluminense FC U-23's in a 3-0 win before adding another victory over the Montreal Impact to clinch the team's first-place finish in Group B. He enters the 2014 season, his fifth with the club since turning pro at age 17, after helping lead affiliate Orlando City SC to the USL PRO title in 2013 while on loan with the Lions.
Sporting KC unvieled the 2014/15 secondary kits Tuesday night in front of 2,000+ fans at Sporting Takeoff. Sports Radio 810-WHB's Between the Lines broadcasted live from Hangar 1, as Danny Clinkscale and Kevin Kietzman interviewed Sporting KC defender Matt Besler.
From 7-8 p.m., Callum Williams and Andy Edwards previewed the 2014 season with a new edition of the Sporting KC Show, featuring an interview with goalkeeper Eric Kronberg. Later in the night, T.J. Carptenter spoke with Dom Dwyer to get his thoughts on the coming season.
Lastly, after being named the new Sporting KC captain, Matt Besler joined Steven St. John and Nate Bukaty on Wednesday morning's The Border Patrol. Listen to the podcasts of all of the interviews below:
Matt Besler on Between the Lines
Dom Dwyer with T.J. Carpenter
The Sporting KC Show
Matt Besler on The Border Patrol