"By The Numbers" is a season-long series presented by the Kansas Department of Transportation that gives a statistical preview of every Sporting match. To visit the series archive, click here.
811 The number of alcohol-related injury crashes in Kansas in 2019.
The inaugural meeting between MLS original Sporting Kansas City (1-1-1, 4 points) and expansion side Austin FC (2-1-0, 6 points) will take place Sunday under the lights at world-class Children's Mercy Park. The high-profile Western Conference clash is slated for 6:30 p.m. CT and a limited number of tickets are available at SeatGeek.com while supplies last. Supporters can catch Sunday's showdown nationally on FS1, FOX Deportes and the FOX Sports app, while Sports Radio 810 WHB and La Grande 1340 AM will air local radio broadcasts.
Austin FC enter the weekend high on confidence after recording consecutive road wins over the Colorado Rapids and Minnesota United FC. The MLS debutants are led on the field by longtime Sporting captain and Matt Besler and off the field by two other Kansas City legends—head coach Josh Wolff and assistant Davy Arnaud.
As this compelling Mother's Day matchup approaches, we take a statistical look at how both teams stack up in our newest edition of By the Numbers, presented by the Kansas Department of Transportation.
- Sunday marks the inaugural meeting between Sporting and Austin FC.
- Sunday serves as a Sporting reunion for Austin FC head coach Josh Wolff, assistant Davy Arnaud and defender Matt Besler. The three have combined to make 784 competitive appearances in a Kansas City uniform, including 678 in the regular season.
- MLS record: 2-1-0, 6 points
- MLS standings: 4th in West
- MLS away record: 2-1-0 (4 GF, 3 GA)
- Last match: Won 1-0 at Minnesota United FC on May 1
- Austin enter Week 4 as the only team in MLS with multiple road wins this season (2-1-0 away record).
- Austin will play their first eight regular season matches on the road before opening the Q2 Stadium by hosting the San Jose Earthquakes on June 19.
- Forward Cecilio Dominguez and midfielder Diego Fagundez have accounted for all four Austin goals, scoring twice each.
- Austin are one of six MLS clubs to have two players with at least two goals this season (RBNY, NYC, RSL, SJ and SEA).
- Midfielder Alexander Ring leads MLS in passes (233) and ranks second in passes completed (188). He also leads MLS is tackles won (12) and places third in duels won (30).
- Left back Zan Kolmanic leads Austin with five chances created.
- Five different players have recorded assists on Austin's four goals (Kolmanic, Jon Gallagher, Rodney Redes, Jared Stroud and Danny Hoesen).
- Austin have faced 18.7 shots per match, the second-most in MLS.
- Austin rank last in MLS with 9.0 fouls committed per match.
Sporting Kansas City
- MLS record: 1-1-1, 4 points
- MLS standings: 10th in West
- MLS home record: 0-0-1 (1 GF, 1 GA)
- Last match: Lost 1-3 at Real Salt Lake on May 1
- Sporting hasn’t lost their inaugural home game against an MLS expansion club since falling to Montreal in 2012, posting a 5-0-1 record in such matches since 2016.
- Sporting's loss at RSL last weekend snapped an eight-game regular season unbeaten run and a five-game regular season road unbeaten run dating back to 2020, both of which were the longest in MLS.
- Sporting have scored in 23 of their last 24 regular season matches since the start of 2020, including all 10 at home.
- Sporting ranks last in MLS with 4.3 chances created per game.
- Sporting matches have averaged 18.3 combined fouls per game this season, the fewest of any team in MLS.
- Among players with at least 700 regular season minutes played, forward Alan Pulido ranks second in MLS since the start of 2020 with 0.973 goals and primary assists per game.
- Pulido has a goal or assist in nine of the 12 games he has started since joining Sporting in 2020. He is the only player in MLS to record a goal or assist in 75% of his regular season starts (min. 5 regular season starts) during that period.
- Defender Andreu Fontas ranks fourth in MLS with 19 clearances.
- Forward Khiry Shelton owns a 25-9-9 regular season record as a Sporting starter. He places third among MLS forwards with 23 duels won this season.
- Sporting are 7-1-0 in the regular season when Pulido, Shelton and Johnny Russell start together in attack.
- With this week’s signing of 18-year-old defender Kayden Pierre, Sporting leads MLS with 12 Academy products on its current roster.
Milestones and Miscellany
- Sporting defender Graham Zusi is one shy of his 295th regular season appearance for Sporting, which would move him past Matt Besler and into sole possession of first place in club history.
- Sporting captain Johnny Russell is one shy of his 100th appearance for the club in all competitions.
Team Stats (2021 regular season)
(Source: Opta; MLS rank in parenthesis)
|Category (per game)||Sporting||Austin FC|
|Goals scored||1.33 (t-11th)||1.33 (t-11th)|
|Goals conceded||1.67 (t-19th)||1.00 (t-6th)|
|Shots||7.7 (t-24th)||13.0 (t-12th)|
|Shots on goal||3.0 (t-22nd)||4.7 (10th)|
|Shooting accuracy||52.9% (10th)||42.4% (21st)|
|Shot conversion rate||17.4% (5th)||10.3% (14th)|
|Shots faced||11.0 (t-9th)||18.7 (26th)|
|Passing accuracy||76.4% (22nd)||83.7% (8th)|
|Possession||45.0% (25th)||53.9% (5th)|
|Chances created||4.3 (27th)||10.3 (t-9th)|
|Duels won||45.7 (23rd)||56.0 (8th)|
|Tackles won||9.7 (14th)||12.3 (t-3rd)|
|Interceptions||13.0 (t-7th)||10.7 (t-17th)|
|Clearances||20.7 (3rd)||16.7 (12th)|
|Fouls committed||9.7 (25th)||9.0 (27th)|
|Fouls suffered||8.7 (26th)||12.0 (t-13th)|