"By The Numbers" presented by Compass Minerals is a season-long series that gives a statistical preview of every Sporting match. To visit the series archive, click here.
Riding a three-match unbeaten run in MLS play, Sporting Kansas City will now prepare for one of the most highly anticipated regular season matches in club history.
Indeed, the stage is set for Sporting and expansion rivals st. louis city sc to square off Saturday night at citypark in downtown St. Louis. Kickoff is slated for 8:55 p.m. CT with live coverage beginning at 8:30 p.m. CT on FS1, Apple TV, Sports Radio 810 WHB and La Grande 1340 AM.
Sporting and St. Louis experienced dissimilar starts to 2023, with the MLS originals stumbling out of the gates and the newcomers enjoying white-hot form. Recent trends, however, will give Sporting no shortage of belief heading into the inaugural battle between the clubs. We take a statistical look at game in our newest edition of By the Numbers, presented by Compass Minerals.
- Sporting and St. Louis will meet for the first time on Saturday. The clubs have three regular season meetings scheduled in 2023, with a game at Children’s Mercy Park on Sept. 2 and another match at CityPark on Sept. 30.
- Sporting has faced a team from St. Louis just once in its 28-year history, defeating USL side Saint Louis FC with a 1-0 home win in the 2015 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Round of 32. Graham Zusi scored the decisive goal as Sporting went on to win the Open Cup title later that year.
Sporting Kansas City
- 2023 MLS record: 2-7-4, 10 points (13th in West | 9 GF, 17 GA)
- 2023 MLS away record: 1-4-3 (5 GF, 10 GA)
- Last five MLS matches: 2-2-1 (L-L-W-W-T)
- Sporting have recorded six goals and 10 assists in their last three MLS matches after recording three goals and one assist in their first 10 league games of the season.
- Sporting are 3-0-0 when scoring multiple goals this season in all competitions and 0-8-4 when scoring one or fewer.
- On Saturday, Sporting will conclude a stretch of five matches in 14 days across all competitions, four of which were on the road and three of which were regular season away games against top-four teams in the Western Conference (at first-place Seattle on May 7, at second-place LAFC on May 17, at fourth-place st. louis city sc on May 20).
- Sporting have scored six of their nine regular season goals before the 32nd minute this season. The club’s three second-half goals are the fewest in MLS.
- Sporting have outshot opponents by an average of 12.6 to 11.1 this season.
- Sporting rank fourth in MLS in final third entries per game (60.2) and fifth in successful passes in the final third per game (98.1).
- Sporting rank fourth in MLS in progressive carries per game (20.1) and fifth in progressive passes per game (42.7).
- Since the start of 2020, Sporting are 17-6-6 in the regular season when all three of the club’s Designated Players play in the same match (1.9 goals per game, 29 games). The team is 25-33-15 without at least one Designated Player during that time (1.3 goals per game, 73 games). Sporting’s DPs from 2018-2020 were Alan Pulido, Gadi Kinda and Johnny Russell. The club’s DPs in 2023 are Pulido, Kind and Erik Thommy.
- Forward Johnny Russell has recorded a goal contribution in each of Sporting’s last two games, assisting in a 3-0 win over Minnesota on May 13 and scoring a first-half equalizer in Wednesday’s 1-1 draw at LAFC (the 50th regular season goal of his MLS career).
- Forward Alan Pulido has recorded a goal contribution in each of Sporting’s last three games, tallying a goal and two assists. Pulido has 25 total goal contributions (15 goals, 10 assists) in 32 career regular season starts and Sporting are 12-1-0 when Pulido scores in the regular season.
- Forward Daniel Salloi has scored or assisted on seven of Sporting’s 12 goals this season in all competitions (three goals, four assists). He is tied for second in MLS in shots on target (16), second in progressive carries (51) and fourth in successful crosses from open play (12).
- Midfielder Remi Walter has started 55 consecutive regular season matches for Sporting since Sept. 29, 2021, the second-longest active streak among MLS field players behind Jakob Glesnes (85) and tied for the fourth-longest streak in club history.
- Walter has recorded assists in each of Sporting’s last two matches—the first multi-game assist streak of his MLS career—and is the only Sporting player to play all 1,170 minutes this season. He leads MLS field players with 113 recoveries and ranks 10th with 23 interceptions.
- Midfielder Erik Thommy has one goal and two assists in Sporting’s last three games. Sporting are 4-0-0 when Thommy scores in the regular season all-time. He ranks fourth in MLS in shots (39) and fifth in shots on target (15).
- Midfielder Gadi Kinda has one goal and one assist in Sporting’s last three games. He has 25 total goal contributions (12 goals, 13 assists) in 48 career regular season appearances.
- Midfielder Nemanja Radoja played the full 90 minutes in Wednesday’s 1-1 draw at LAFC, his first 90-minute outing in a domestic league match since April 21, 2022, when he played for Spanish La Liga side Levante. He completed 23 of 25 passes in the attacking half, won seven duels and led the team in both tackles (four) and recoveries (seven).
- Goalkeeper Kendall McIntosh tied his MLS career-high with six saves in Wednesday’s 1-1 draw at LAFC. He is tied for the MLS lead with a save percentage of 85.7%.
Peter Vermes post-match press conference vs. LAFC | May 17, 2023
st. Louis city sc
- 2023 MLS record: 6-4-1, 19 points (4th in West | 22 GF, 13 GA)
- 2023 MLS home record: 3-2-0 (12 GF, 5 GA)
- Last five MLS matches: 1-3-1 (L-W-T-L-L)
- st. louis started the season 5-0-0, becoming the first MLS expansion side to win its first five games. The club has gone 1-4-1 since then.
- st. louis averaged 3.0 goals per match in its first five games. The club has averaged 1.2 goals per game in the six matches since then.
- st. louis ranks fourth in MLS with 1.83 goals per game. Their 12 goals at home (2.4 per game) are the second most in the Western Conference behind LAFC (13).
- st. louis has scored seven goals from the 31st minute until halftime, tied for the most in MLS.
- st. louis has conceded nine of its 13 goals after the 60th minute. Their nine goals conceded during this interval are tied for third most in MLS.
- st. louis has four multi-goal wins, tied for the second most in MLS behind Columbus (five).
- st. louis has trailed at halftime just once this season, a 1-0 loss at Chicago Fire FC on May 13. The team is 3-0-0 this season when leading at halftime.
- According to Opta, st. louis has outperformed its expected goal differential by 12.45 goals, the most in MLS (+9 goal differential, -3.45 expected goal differential).
- According to Opta, st. louis has outperformed its expected goal total by 7.44 goals, the most in MLS (22 goals scored, 14.56 expected goals).
- According to Opta, st. louis has outperformed its expected goals conceded total by 5.01 goals, the second most in MLS (13 goals conceded, 18.01 expected goals conceded).
- Forward Joao Klauss leads st. louis with five goals and is second in the team with four assists. The team is 6-2-1 (2.3 goals per game) when he plays and 0-2-0 (0.5 goals per game) when he doesn’t.
- Midfielder Eduard Loewen leads st. louis in assists (five) and key passes (16) while ranking fifth in MLS in tackles won (22). He is one of four players to start all 11 regular season matches for the club alongside goalkeeper Roman Burki and defenders Jake Nerwinski and John Nelson.
- Defender Tim Parker ranks fifth in MLS with 56 interceptions.
- Goalkeeper Roman Burki ranks fifth in MLS in saves (44) and seven in save percentage (78.6%).
Milestones and Miscellany
- Forward Daniel has 51 goals in all competitions, one shy of tying Davy Arnaud for fourth most in club history and four behind Johnny Russell in third.
- Midfielder Remi Walter has made 55 straight regular season starts for Sporting, the second-longest active streak among MLS field players behind Philadelphia defender Jakob Glesnes (85). His 55-game streak is tied for the fourth longest in club history (GK Kevin Hartman 90, GK Jimmy Nielsen 90, F Mark Chung 74, GK Tony Meola 55).