Sporting Kansas City vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC
2022 MLS Regular Season | Match 15
Saturday, May 28 | 8 p.m. CT (8:11 kickoff)
Children's Mercy Park | Kansas City, KS
Local TV | 38 The Spot
Streaming | SportingKC.com, SKC App, ESPN+
English Radio | Sports Radio 810 WHB
Spanish Radio | La Grande 1340 AM
Sporting Kansas City (3-7-4, 13 points) will host the Vancouver Whitecaps FC (3-7-2, 11 points) at 8 p.m. CT on Saturday at Children's Mercy Park in a rematch of last year's MLS Cup Playoffs encounter.
Tickets are availableonline at SeatGeek.comand Saturday's match will mark the return of the club's annual Sporting Sustainability theme night featuring the newly-released adidas Primeblue uniforms. The Class of 2022 is invited to come celebrate at Children's Mercy Park with the 2022 Grad Pack featuring a South Stand ticket and Sporting Kansas City Class of 2022 shirt for only $30. In addition, fans 21 and older can take advantage of the Michelob Ultra Moment Pack for $35 to receive a South Stand ticket, hot dog and beer.
The Western Conference clash will be locally televised on 38 The Spot with three hours of coverage beginning at 7:30 p.m. CT. The broadcast will stream live on SportingKC.com and in the Sporting KC app for viewers in Kansas and Missouri (excluding St. Louis area per MLS policy), as well as ESPN+ for out-of-market subscribers. Radio commentary will also air on Sports Radio 810 WHB (English) and La Grande 1340 AM (Spanish).
Sporting KC have won three straight home matches during a stretch in which the team has lost just once in eight games across all competitions since April 23. Meanwhile, Vancouver are the only team in MLS without a road point in 2022. The Whitecaps have lost the club's last seven MLS road matches - a streak that began in Kansas City last November with a 3-1 defeat at Children's Mercy Park in the MLS Cup Playoffs -- and are winless in their past 10 games away from home across all competitions.
Occupying the bottom two positions in the Western Conference, both clubs are concluding a congested schedule in which each team will be playing their seventh match in a three-week span. Sporting are coming off a 2-1 comeback victory over Houston on Wednesday in the U.S. Open Cup Round of 16, while the Whitecaps prevailed in penalties against Cavalry FC after playing 120 minutes on Wednesday in the Canadian Championship quarterfinals.
Sporting KC captain Johnny Russell scored both goals in Wednesday's win and leads the team with six goals this season in all competitions, five of which have come in the past month. Russell has four career goals against the Whitecaps, highlighted by a hat trick in 2018, and his next tally will see him become only the fourth player in team history to score 50 goals in all competitions for the club.
Teammate Roger Espinoza is also on the cusp of a major milestone as the World Cup veteran's next regular season appearance will be the 300th of his Sporting KC and MLS career. Among one-club players in Major League Soccer, only three have accomplished the feat: LA Galaxy legend Cobi Jones (306), Timbers midfielder Diego Chara (322), and Sporting KC defender Graham Zusi (330).
Sporting lead the all-time regular season series against the Whitecaps with an 11-5-4 record, including a 6-1-2 mark at home where SKC hasn't lost to Vancouver since 2017, however Sporting fell in Vancouver in the previous meeting this year as Ryan Raposo scored in the 73rd minute in a 1-0 result on April 2 at BC Place.
Thomas Hasal made four saves in the shutout, however the 22-year-old goalkeeper is currently injured and is one of six players expected to miss Saturday's match for Vancouver. Head coach Vanni Sartini will also be without defender Tristan Blackmon (injured), captain Russell Teibert (injured), forward Brian White (health and safety protocol) and Designated Player Andres Cubas (international duty), while midfielder Ryan Gauld (injured) and forward Brian White (health and safety protocol) are both doubtful on the team's player availability report.
Sporting is in a similarly shorthanded situation, missing Designated Players Gadi Kinda and Alan Pulido to long-term knee injuries as well as MLS All-Star Daniel Salloi due to a suspension handed down by the MLS Disciplinary Committee. A further six players are questionable due to injuries: starting defenders Logan Ndenbe and Graham Zusi, as well as a foursome of forwards in Russell, Khiry Shelton, Marinos Tzionis and Nikola Vujnovic.
Following Saturday's match, Sporting KC and adidas are teaming up on a sustainability initiative on the Mazuma Plaza at Children's Mercy Park. Fans can pick up an adidas reusable tote as well as a mailer to take home and fill with donations to send to the adidas Give Back program, which accepts gently used clothes and shoes from any brand and rewards participants with adiClub points and vouchers to use on adidas.com.