Five Things presented by Children’s Mercy Kansas City: Sporting hits the road to face off against Minnesota United | June 1, 2024


Sporting Kansas City closes out a hectic stretch of five games in 15 days this weekend with a trip to take on Minnesota United FC at Allianz Field on Saturday night. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. CT and will be available to stream in English and Spanish on MLS Season Pass via Apple TV. The match will also be available on the radio locally on Sports Radio 810 WHB (English) and La Grande 1340 AM (Spanish).


Sporting Kansas City continues to search for a way to curb the club’s current nine-game winless run in MLS regular-season play, including six straight losses following Wednesday’s 2-1 loss against the Vancouver Whitecaps at Children’s Mercy Park. The six-game losing streak in regular season is Sporting’s longest since 2006.

While the club has advanced to the U.S. Open Cup Quarterfinals, Sporting is still looking to get the team’s regular-season campaign back on track and will have another opportunity this weekend with a road match against high-flying Minnesota United FC at Allianz Field.

Saturday’s match marks the conclusion of a stretch that will see the team play five matches in the space of 15 days from May 18 through June 1. Following Saturday’s match in Minnesota, Sporting will have a week to prepare for a clash with Seattle on June 8 at Children’s Mercy Park with a chance to snap their club-record six-game home winless streak.


Sporting Kansas City closes out a hectic stretch of the 2024 schedule this weekend with a trip to take on Minnesota United FC at Allianz Field on Saturday night. It marks the fifth of five games in 15 days from May 18 through June 1, with Sporting losing all four league games in that stretch but advancing to the U.S. Open Cup Quarterfinals with a 4-0 win over Tulsa on May 21.

Sporting returns to Allianz Field for a rematch with the Loons just over one month since their last visit. Sporting’s active six-game losing streak began with a 2-1 defeat against Minnesota on April 27. Minnesota defender Michael Boxall gave the hosts the lead just 65 seconds into the contest before Tanitoluwa Oluwaseyi added a second midway through the first half after a tight offside decision went the way of the Loons. Alan Pulido pulled a goal back for Sporting before halftime but the squad was unable to find an equalizer in the second half.

Sporting claimed the season series with Minnesota in 2023, winning all three matches in the regular season. Sporting earned a 3-0 win at Children’s Mercy Park on May 13, 2023 behind goals from Dany Rosero, Daniel Salloi and Gadi Kinda. Sporting then earned a rare victory at Allianz Field on Sept. 16, 2023 after Kinda struck late in the second half to steal a 1-0 win before the two sides met on Decision Day with Sporting cruising to a Johnny Russell-inspired 3-1 win as the Scotsman bagged a brace along with a goal from Remi Walter.

Sporting leads the all-time series with the Loons 11-5-3, including a perfect 9-0-0 mark at Children’s Mercy Park and a 2-4-4 record on the road.


Sporting Kansas City winger Marinos Tzionis capped his impressive month of May with another goal in the club’s 2-1 loss to the Vancouver Whitecaps at Children’s Mercy Park on Wednesday night.

Appearing as a 79th-minute substitute, Tzionis arrived in the area to meet Khiry Shelton’s low cross and fire the ball beyond Yohei Takaoka and into the back of the net to give Sporting hope in second-half stoppage time.

The goal was his first MLS goal of the season and his third in all competitions in 2024. Tzionis scored in each of Sporting’s three midweek matches during the month of May, including U.S. Open Cup wins over Union Omaha and FC Tulsa. Tzionis led Sporting with three goals in all competitions during the month of May, accounting for half of his six career goals with the club.


Sporting Kansas City forward Khiry Shelton had an unfamiliar assignment on Wednesday, starting at right back for the first time in his professional career in the club’s 2-1 loss to the Vancouver Whitecaps at Children’s Mercy Park.

Shelton has previously made a handful of substitute appearances at right back but never before had he started a competitive match in that position. His switch to the backline allowed Jake Davis to move into midfield with three of Sporting’s regular midfielders out either through injury or suspension.

Shelton acquitted himself nicely on the night, completing 89 percent of his passes, creating two chances and winning five of his seven duels.

The 30-year-old capped his night with his first assist of the season in the 92nd minute when he drove beyond two Vancouver defenders to burst into the area and set up Marinos Tzionis to cut the Whitecaps’ lead to one. The assist was Shelton’s first in MLS play since July 9, 2022 and his first goal contribution in league action since scoring the final goal in the club’s 4-1 victory over Austin FC on June 10, 2023.


Sporting Kansas City midfielder Memo Rodriguez is set to make his return from suspension this weekend after missing Wednesday’s 2-1 setback against the Vancouver Whitecaps through yellow card accumulation.

Rodriguez is coming off a fine performance in Portland last Saturday where he scored his first goal for the club. Arriving on the edge of the area to meet Alan Pulido’s layoff, Rodriguez lashed a venomous strike beyond the dive of Maxime Crepeau and into the corner to make the score 1-1 in the 63rd minute and mark his first MLS goal since May 31, 2023 when he was a member of the LA Galaxy.

Rodriguez, who was making the 100th start of his MLS regular-season career last Saturday, is tied for the team-lead with five goal involvements for Sporting KC so far in 2024 and leads the team with four assists.