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22 October 9:23 de la mañana

The final round of the 2014-15 CONCACAF Champions League group stage kicked off Tuesday night in dramatic fashion. Reigning CCL champions Cruz Azul were eliminated with a 1-1 draw to Alajuelense, while the Portland Timbers were sent home following a 3-1 loss at CD Olimpia.

And while Sporting KC won't take the field until Thursday night - in the last match of the 2014-15 group stage - the picture for potential quarterfinal matchups is starting to get more clear. As a reminder, the eight group winners that advance to the quarterfinal round are re-seeded based on their finish in the group stage (i.e. the teams with the most points earn the higher seeds with goal differential being the first tie-breaker). In 2013, Sporting KC won their group with eight points and finished as the 7th overall seed setting up a showdown with eventual CCL champions Cruz Azul in the quarterfinals.

While the picture will become even more clear after tonight's matches, one thing for certain is that Sporting KC can finish no lower than 7th overall. The club currently has seven points with one match to play and Alajuelense is locked in as the 8th seed after winning their group with six points. And after winning their group with 12 points, D.C. United can finish no lower than third overall. They can also finish as high as first or second depending on tonight's results. Both Pachuca and Montreal currently have nine points with their final match scheduled for tonight.

Here is a schedule for tonight's matches and what Sporting KC fans should be rooting for:

New York Red Bulls vs. Montreal Impact - 7pm CT

The Impact have already won the group with nine points through three matches. Even with a win tonight, the Red Bulls can only reach seven points. With Sporting KC's max points at 10, a Red Bulls win, or even a draw, would go a long way toward Sporting KC earning a higher seed in the quarterfinal round.

Real Espana vs. Pachuca - 9pm CT

Pachuca has been the most dominant team in the group stage with nine points and a +10 goal differential through three games. Similar to the game above, Sporting KC will want as many group winners as possible to finish with nine points. With that said, if Pachuca wins tonight, they will clinch the No. 1 overall seed, thus limiting Sporting KC's chances of playing a team from LigaMX in the quarterfinal round.


Lastly, it's important to note that while Sporting KC has a three-point lead on Saprissa, earning a result in the Monster's Cave will be no easy take. Sporting KC will advance with a win, a draw, a one-goal loss or a two-goal loss provided we score at least two goals. If Saprissa wins 2-0 or by three or more goals, the Costa Rican side will win the group. If the Saprissa wins 3-1, both teams will finish tied and the winner will be determined by a drawing of lots. That would take place immediately after the game.

This is a lot of information to consume and it will all become more clear after tonight's matches. We'll provide another update in the morning.
 

20 October 11:07 de la mañana

Earlier this fall, the Sporting Club Network presented by Price Chopper opened the second edition of its Sporting Kansas City Youth Reporter contest. Hopefuls from around the Midwest submitted their videos explaining why they wanted to be Sporting Kansas City’s next Youth Reporter. After all the entries were reviewed, Carter Stuck, Miles Crosser and Sofia Stockwood were chosen to attend a Sporting KC training session at Swope Soccer Village. The finalists were able to take in practice alongside “The Voice of Sporting Kansas City” Cal Williams. At the conclusion of training, all three had the opportunity to interview their favorite Sporting KC players.

In the end, Sofia was chosen to be Sporting Kansas City’s next Youth Reporter. During Sporting KC’s match against Chicago, Sofia and her family enjoyed an exclusive gameday experience that kicked off with a private tour of Sporting Park. After visiting the TV truck to learn about all that goes into the production of a game, Sofia listened alongside Williams and Diego Gutierrez as they called the game live.

From there, Sofia was recognized on-field at halftime and received a rousing applause from the crowd for her accomplishments. The evening came to a close with Sofia meeting Matt Besler, Graham Zusi and Benny Feilhaber at the conclusion of the match and observing the post-game press conference that featured Sporting KC Manager Peter Vermes and Zusi inside the interview room.

“The entire night was so much fun,” said Sofia. “From the TV truck, to hanging out with Cal and Diego in the booth, to getting down on the field and of course meeting Matt Besler, who's my inspiration.”

For details on the next Sporting KC Youth Reporter contest and to stay informed on all things Sporting Club Network, be sure to follow along on Twitter and Facebook.

18 October 8:39 de la tarde

Cast your vote below for the Man of the Match from Sporting Kansas City's 2-1 loss at the Philadelphia Union on Saturday night.

16 October 9:33 de la mañana

With two weeks left in the 2014 MLS Regular Season, the playoff picture has become a lot more clear. Eight teams have punched their playoff ticket - including Sporting KC - with two more to go. Columbus needs one point from their remaining two games to clinch the final spot in the Eastern Conference. Toronto FC needs to win their final two games, and for the Crew to lose their remaining two games, to clinch their first playoff spot in club history.

Over in the Western Conference, the Vancouver Whitecaps hold a one-point lead over the Portland Timbers for the final playoff spot. A Vancouver win this weekend coupled with a Timbers lose would secure the Whitecaps a playoff berth. If the Timbers can earn a point against Real Salt Lake, their playoff fate will go down to the final weekend.

So how does this all relate to Sporting KC? Well even though we are in the playoffs for the fourth straight year, seeding is still up for grabs. Sporting KC can still finish anywhere from first to fifth place in the Eastern Conference. Sporting KC's penultimate regular season match will be Saturday evening when they take on the Philadelphia Union at PPL Park. The match will kick off at 6pm CT and can be seen locally on KMCI TV's 38 the Spot and across the Midwest on SKCTV.

Here is a list of games we'll be watching this weekend that could impact Sporting KC's playoff seeding, as well as a few national TV games to keep an eye on.

1. Houston Dynamo vs. New England Revolution | Thursday, Oct. 16, 7pm CT | ESPN2

Tonight's match at BBVA Compass Stadium is big for a number of reasons. Sporting KC and New England are tied on points with 49 apiece. A Revolution, coupled with a Sporting KC win or draw, would put the reigning MLS Cup champs in the driver's seat for the second seed in the Eastern Conference. New England currently holds the tie-breaker edge on Sporting KC with one more victory so a win tonight in Houston would give Jay Heaps' squad the edge heading into next weekend's regular season finale vs. Toronto FC.

For Houston, it will be an emotional night. The team was officially eliminated from playoff contention last week, but news broke this week that head coach Dominic Kinnear - the only head coach in team history - will be stepping down at the end of the season. Kinnear will go back to his former club and lead the San Jose Earthquakes in their inaugural season in their new stadium. It should be a a raucous atmosphere in Kinnear's final home game and expect the players to come out fighting.

2. Portland Timbers vs. Real Salt Lake | Friday, Oct. 17, 9pm CT | NBCSN

This game is important for a number of reasons. First and foremost, a Timbers loss puts the reigning regular season Western Conference champions on the brink of playoff elimination. A single point from the game and they are still alive.

For Real Salt Lake, Jeff Cassar's team is fighting to stay out of the Knockout Round game, but there is also a bigger picture in play. Bear with me ...

Currently, the Seattle Sounders have locked up a berth in the 2015-16 CONCACAF Champions League group stage by virtue of winning the 2014 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. That means that three CCL spots are up for grabs. Those will go to the Supporters' Shield winner, the conference winner that does not win the Supporters' Shield and the MLS Cup champion. If one team takes two of those spots (i.e. Seattle wins Open Cup an Supporters' Shield) then the second berth goes to the next highest team in the Supporters' Shield standings.

So hypothetically speaking Seattle wins the Open Cup, LA Galaxy win the Supporters' Shield, D.C. United win the Eastern Conference and one of those three teams wins MLS Cup, then the final CCL berth will go to the next highest team in the Supporters' Shield standings.

That is added incentive for teams to finish with as many regular season points as possible. Real Salt Lake is currently in line for that next spot, but any of six teams could move into that spot including Sporting KC. It's confusing yes, but the picture should get more clear after this weekend's matches.

3. Toronto FC vs. Montreal Impact | Saturday, Oct. 18, 1pm CT | Univision Deportes Network

Plain and simple, Toronto FC needs to win their final two games and Columbus needs to lose their final two games for the Reds to clinch a playoff berth.

4. Colorado Rapids vs. FC Dallas | Saturday, Oct. 18, 2pm CT | NBCSN

FC Dallas has been one of the hottest teams in MLS, while the Colorado Rapids have been one of the worst.

So why should Sporting KC fans pay attention to this one? Go back a few paragraphs. Real Salt Lake has 52 points; FC Dallas has 51 points; Sporting KC has 49 points. There are a few teams jockeying to finish as high in the standings as possible and FC Dallas is one of those teams.

If Sporting KC earns three points on Friday, all of SKC Nation will be glued to Saturday's match at PPL Park. If both Sporting KC and the Philadelphia Union win, Peter Vermes' squad will be playing postseason soccer.

Columbus is currently in the final playoff spot, while Philadelphia sits four points behind them. A Crew win would all but eliminate the Union from booking a playoff spot.

5. D.C. United vs. Chicago Fire | Saturday, Oct. 18 6pm CT | MLS Live

A win or draw and D.C. United will clinch their first regular season conference title since 2007. A point would also secure them a spot in the 2015-16 CONCACAF Champions League.

6. New York Red Bulls vs. Columbus Crew | Sunday, Oct. 19 2pm CT | UniMas

Sporting KC holds a two-point edge on the Red Bulls and a three-point edge on the Crew. Those numbers could change depending on Sporting KC's result against the Union on Saturday. Neither Columbus nor New York can finish first in the Eastern Conference, but depending on other results, both teams could finish as high as second.

7. LA Galaxy vs. Seattle Sounders | Sunday, Oct. 19 7:15pm CT | ESPN2

The penultimate week of the regular season concludes with a big one Sunday night when the LA Galaxy host the Seattle Sounders on ESPN2. The two teams are tied atop the Western Conference with 60 points. The Sounders hold the tiebreaker edge (more wins) so if they win Sunday night, they'll clinch the Supporters' Shield. Any other result and the Shield can't be won until the two teams play the following weekend in Seattle.

So what should Sporting KC fans root for on Sunday? At this point, no result can impact Sporting KC. Both teams have already secured Champions League spots. So Sporting KC fans can sit back, enjoy the game and enjoy Landon Donovan's last regular season home game.

Click here for the complete MLS schedule.

Click here for complete MLS playoff scenarios.

14 October 1:44 de la tarde

Sporting KC captain Matt Besler joined The Border Patrol on Sports Radio 810 WHB this morning from Boca Raton, Florida, where the United States Men's National Team will take on Honduras in an international friendly tonight at 7 p.m. CT on ESPN, WatchESPN, UniMas and ESPN Deportes Radio. The Overland Park, Kansas native -- who was added to the U.S. roster on Saturday along with teammate Graham Zusi -- discussed the match-up with a CONCACAF rival while also giving his thoughts on the Royals postseason run and Sporting KC securing a playoff berth of their own with Friday's 2-0 win over Chicago.

Listen to the 10-minute interview below and visit USsoccer.com for a full match preview...

14 October 1:08 de la tarde

Sporting Kansas City homegrown defender Erik Palmer-Brown is among the world's top 40 players at his age, acording to The Guardian's "Next Generation 2014" list released earlier today. The 17-year-old is the only American included in the compilation and one of two from CONCACAF along with Mexico's Erick Aguirre.

A Lee's Summit, Missouri native, Palmer-Brown appeared in six matches for Sporting Kansas City across all competition in 2014. He made his professional debut in May, becoming the youngest player in MLS history to start a regular season match as a defender and the youngest player to appear in a Major League Soccer match this season, for the first of three MLS games played. Palmer-Brown also started each of the team's two matches in the 2014 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup and he most recently started in the team's 3-0 victory over Real Esteli FC in the 2014/15 CONCACAF Champions League.

Palmer-Brown is a member of the United States Under-20 Men's National Team, participating in an international training camp in Buenos Aires, Argentina last month. He attended the prestigious U.S. Soccer Residency Program in Bradenton, Florida in 2013 before being named one of five finalists for U.S. Soccer's Young Male Athlete of the Year.

Palmer-Brown is a product of the Sporting Kansas City Academy. He became the club's third homegrown player upon signing a professional contract in August 2013.

10 October 11:07 de la tarde

Cast your vote below for the Man of the Match from Sporting Kansas City's 2-0 win over the Chicago Fire on Friday night at Sporting Park.

07 October 4:47 de la tarde

The road to the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup begins in Kansas City for the No. 1 ranked U.S. Women's National Team, who began training at Swope Soccer Village on Monday in preparation for next week's 2014 CONCACAF Women's Championship at Sporting Park. The eight-team tournament will qualify three teams directly to the World Cup finals in Canada next summer, while the fourth-place finisher will advance to a two-game playoff against Ecuador.

The United States opens the competition against Trinidad and Tobago in the second game of the Group A doubleheader on Wednesday, Oct. 15. Tickets start at $32 and are available online at Ticketmaster.com.

07 October 2:21 de la tarde

With three weeks left in the 2014 MLS Regular Season, three teams have clinched a playoff spot, five teams are mathematically eliminated from the playoffs and the remaining 11 teams are vying for the final seven playoff spots.

For the first time all year, Sporting KC enters a weekend with the opportunity to clinch a playoff spot. If Sporting KC defeats the Chicago Fire Friday night at Sporting AND the Philadelphia Union defeat the Columbus Crew on Saturday OR Toronto FC grab two or fewer points from their two matches this week, Sporting KC will book its fourth consecutive playoff berth.

If you haven't purchased MLS Live this season, now is as good a time as any. At only $18.99, the streaming service is a huge bargain for the remainder of the season.

Sporting KC's match vs. Chicago will kick off at 7:30 p.m. CT and can be seen locally on KMCI TV's 38 the Spot and across the Midwest on SKCTV. Limited tickets are available and can be purchased at Ticketmaster.com or by calling the Sporting Park Box Office.

Outside of Sporting KC's on Friday, here are a other games that we'll be keeping an eye on this week.

1. Toronto FC vs. Houston Dynamo | Wednesday, Oct. 8, 6:30pm CT | MLS Live

Houston's playoff hopes are hanging on by a thread. The Dynamo are currently seven points back of fifth place in the East, so at this point in the season every game is a must-win.

Toronto FC has a bit more leeway, but not by much. The Reds are three points back of the Crew for the final playoff spot and have a game in hand on Columbus. A win on Wednesday would move Toronto into a tie for fifth place in the East and give them the edge in the first tiebreaker (most wins).

2. Seattle Sounders vs. Vancouver Whitecaps | Friday, Oct. 10, 9pm CT | NBCSN

Plain and simple, the 2014 Supporters' Shield will be decided by the two Seattle-LA matches to close the season. But with the two teams tied atop the West at 60 points, this week will be critical for each team as they head into the final two weeks of the season. Seattle hosts Vancouver Friday night on NBCSN in their final Cascadia clash of the season. The Whitecaps are currently one point ahead of Portland for the final playoff spot in the West and will need a strong defensive effort to slow down Clint Dempsey, Obafemi Martins and the high-powered Sounders attack.

3. Montreal Impact vs. New England Revolution | Saturday, Oct. 11, 3pm CT | Univision Deportes Network

New England has been one of the hottest teams in MLS with seven wins in their last eight matches. The Revolution are currently in second place in the East, two points ahead of Sporting KC and four points back of D.C. United. Saturday's match is the first of three Conference matches for the Revs to conclude the regular season.

4. Philadelphia Union vs. Columbus Crew | Saturday, Oct. 11, 6pm CT | MLS Live

If Sporting KC earns three points on Friday, all of SKC Nation will be glued to Saturday's match at PPL Park. If both Sporting KC and the Philadelphia Union win, Peter Vermes' squad will be playing postseason soccer.

Columbus is currently in the final playoff spot, while Philadelphia sits four points behind them. A Crew win would all but eliminate the Union from booking a playoff spot.

5. New York Red Bulls vs. Toronto FC | Saturday, Oct. 11 6pm CT | Univision Deportes Network

Thierry Henry, Bradley Wright-Phillips and Jermaine Defore; Three reasons MLS fans will want to tune in to this match on Saturday night. Another reason? Toronto FC is in a dog-fight for a playoff spot and cannot afford to drop many points over their final four games.

The Red Bulls are in a better spot after last weekend's win over Houston, sitting in fourth place in the East, four points above the red line.

6. FC Dallas vs. LA Galaxy | Sunday, Oct. 12 6pm CT | ESPN2

A good matchup to end a great weekend of soccer. Bruce Arena has his team firing on all cylinders right now, outscoring their last three opponents 9-1 and carrying a 10-game unbeaten streak into the weekend. FC Dallas is six points above the red line and can clinch a playoff spot this weekend with a win over the Galaxy.

Click here for the complete MLS schedule.

Click here for complete MLS playoff scenarios.