After kicking off the 2012 preseason at the Chiefs Indoor Practice Facility on Monday of this week, members of the Sporting Kansas City technical staff are not only evaluating the form and fitness of returning players from the club's playoff run in 2011, but also the ability and potential of a group of guest trialists.
The group of trialists currently in camp range widely in both age and experience, but they will all be hoping to earn a ticket to join the team as they continue preparations in Tucson next week. Read below for profiles on each player.
Cyrus Saydee - Midfielder - At just 19 years of age, it's hard to believe that Saydee had already exhausted his NCAA eligibility at Michigan State before joining Sporting Kansas City on trial. A native of Lansing, Mi., Saydee was a first-team Big Ten honoree for his performances this past fall for the Spartans, where he led the team in assists, with six.
Irving Garcia - Midfielder - A star of the MLS Combine, Garcia is a crafty midfielder who was originally drafted by the New York Red Bulls in the fourth round of the 2010 MLS SuperDraft. Garcia played alongside current Sporting KC midfielder Roger Espinoza for one season while the two were at Yavapai College in Arizona before moving on to UC-Irvine. Garcia featured for the Arizona Sahuaros against Sporting Kansas City in last year's Desert Cup.
Kevin Strunk - Defender - A graduate of Lehigh University, Strunk is a physical centerback who was named Patriot League Defensive Player of the Year in both 2010 and 2011, a feat that had only been accomplished three times in conference history.
Steve Spangler - Goalkeeper - Listed at 6-3, Spangler was a three-year starter for the Oregon State Beavers, where he was named to the All-Pac-10 honorable mention team in 2009.
Matt Kuhn - Midfielder - A local Kansas City product and a former member of Sporting Kansas City's U-19 academy team, Kuhn enjoyed four years of success in midfield at Drake University, where he ranks third on the school's all-time assist chart. After graduating from Raytown South High School, Kuhn went on to earn all-conference honors in the MVC in both 2008 and 2009.
Myron Samuel - Forward - Discovered at the team's player combine in Trinidad and Tobago last season, Samuel joins Sporting on trial after a prolific stint with Avenues United of his native Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. Just 19, Samuel was first capped at senior level for his national team in 2009.