Five Things presented by Children’s Mercy Kansas City: Sporting returns home for Chicago clash | June 24, 2023


Sporting Kansas City returns home this weekend to take on Chicago Fire FC at Children’s Mercy Park on Saturday night following Wednesday’s 2-2 draw with the LA Galaxy on the west coast. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. CT and will be streamed on MLS Season Pass on Apple TV in English and Spanish. The match will also be available on the radio locally on Sports Radio 810 WHB (English) and La Grande 1340 AM (Spanish). Tickets are available via


Sporting Kansas City picked up a well-earned point during a 2-2 draw with the LA Galaxy at Dignity Health Sports Park on Wednesday night. Striker Alan Pulido scored twice for the visitors and he now has six goals in his last four matches for the club while his seven goal contributions in the month of June are the most in MLS.

Sporting has gone 5-2-3 since the start of May and leads the Western Conference in wins (five) and points (18) during that time period. The team also leads MLS in goals (20) over the past month and a half.

Sporting has dealt with a heavily congested schedule so far in 2023, highlighted by the fact that they’re the only team to have played in all 20 matchdays so far this season. Sporting has also played two more road games than home games, though that split will even up over the next two weekends as Sporting hosts Chicago then Vancouver to take the home-road split to 11-11.

Pulido’s performance on Wednesday signified just how important he is to the club when healthy. Since the start of 2020, Sporting are 25-13-10 in the regular season when Pulido plays (1.77 points per game and 1.77 goals per game) while the club is 20-28-13 when he does not play (1.2 points per game, 1.25 goals per game).


Sporting Kansas City returns home this weekend to take on Chicago Fire FC at Children’s Mercy Park. It marks Sporting’s fourth matchup with an Eastern Conference foe in 2023, with still two more to come against Inter Miami CF and Nashville SC in September.

Sporting and Chicago met once in 2022, with the Fire claiming all three points with a 3-1 victory at Soldier Field on March 19, 2022. Kacper Przybyłko scored a brace for Chicago while star player Xherdan Shaqiri converted from the penalty spot for the hosts, while Roger Espinoza scored a consolation goal for Sporting.

Sporting last hosted the Fire at Children’s Mercy Park on Sept. 11, 2021 and cruised to a 2-0 victory. Jose Mauri’s low effort snuck beneath goalkeeper Bobby Shuttleworth to give the hosts the lead in the first minute before Johnny Russell tapped home a rebound just four minutes later. Two goals in the opening five minutes was all Sporting would need to coast to three points on the night.

Chicago leads the all-time regular-season series 27-19-12, while Sporting are 14-8-9 at home. However, since Sept. 28, 2012, Sporting are unbeaten in their last nine home matches against the Fire (7-0-2) and have won their last six at Children’s Mercy Park.


Sporting Kansas City forward and Designated Player Alan Pulido showed no signs of slowing down his fine form on Wednesday night, bagging another pair of goals in the club’s 2-2 draw with the LA Galaxy at Dignity Health Sports Park.

Pulido gave Sporting the lead with a well-taken header in the 12th minute, only for the Galaxy to come back and a take a 2-1 lead. Sporting earned a penalty in the 91st minute of the match and the Mexican international stepped up to convert and salvage a point for his side.

Pulido now has goals in four straight MLS regular season matches, which is tied for the longest active streak in MLS currently. Pulido became the seventh different player in team history to score in four straight regular season games. Only two players have scored in five or more consecutive regular season matches: Johnny Russell (eight straight games in 2021) and Preki (five straight games in 1996).

Pulido has now scored in four straight league matches for the first time in his professional career, while he has six goals in the past four games, becoming the fourth player in club history to score six goals in a four-match span. Pulido leads MLS with seven total goal contributions since the start of June (six goals, one assist) and leads Sporting with 11 goal contributions in all competitions this season (eight goals, three assists).

Pulido was named to the MLS Team of the Matchday and was a finalist for Player of the Matchday, which eventually went to Real Salt Lake’s Damir Kreilach. Among players with 20 career regular season goals for the club, Pulido’s .53 goals per 90 minutes is the best rate in club history and Pulido’s .44 goals per game rate is second best in club history.


Sporting Kansas City center back Dany Rosero is set to sit out Saturday night’s matchup with Chicago Fire FC at Children’s Mercy Park after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season in Wednesday’s 2-2 draw with the LA Galaxy at Dignity Health Sports Park. It’s unfortunate timing for Rosero who had just made his return from a hamstring injury to start each of Sporting’s last two matches, having missed two games with the ailment.

Rosero has been a key cog for Sporting since arriving in a transfer from Colombian side Atletico Junior in March. After adapting to the league, Rosero has started four of Sporting’s five victories this season and struck up a fruitful partnership with Fontas at the back for the club.

Due to injury, the team’s backline has seen constant change throughout the year and Wednesday’s back four had never started together prior to the match. In addition, Sporting has used 18 different lineups in 22 matches across all competitions in 2023.


Sporting Kansas City forward Marinos Tzionis returned to Kansas City this week after earning a pair of caps with the Cyprus Men’s National Team during the continuation of UEFA Euro 2024 qualifying in Europe.

Tzionis and Cyprus resumed their Euro 2024 qualifying campaign with a 2-1 home loss to Georgia last Saturday, with Tzionis playing the first 60 minutes in his 23rd cap for his country. Cyprus then visited striker Erling Haaland and Norway on Tuesday, June 20, with Tzionis appearing off the bench for the final 29 minutes during the 3-1 setback.

Tzionis has established himself as a mainstay for the Cyprus national team, amassing 24 caps and scoring two goals for his home country while competing in the UEFA Nations League and FIFA World Cup qualifying. The 21-year-old earned his senior debut in 2020 and opened his Cypriot scoring account in March 2022, bagging the opener in a 2-0 Nations League win over Estonia. Tzionis added another goal in the competition as the difference maker in a 1-0 upset victory over regional rivals Greece last September.