Following a restful week off, Sporting Kansas City II (4-14-7, 19 points) will resume their USL Championship campaign on Friday night when they host Central Division rivals FC Tulsa (12-10-2, 38 points) at world-class Children’s Mercy Park. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. CT and the contest will stream live on ESPN Plus, pitting a pair of familiar foes against each other for the fourth time this year.
Led by fourth-year head coach and former Sporting Kansas City great Paulo Nagamura, Sporting KC II enters the stretch run of the 2021 season occupying eighth place in the Central Division. FC Tulsa, under the guidance of head coach Michael Nsien, presently sit third in the division, a comfortable nine points above the playoff line after going 5-1-1 in their last seven matches.
SKC II and Tulsa have met three times already, with the Oklahoma outfit securing a 2-0 home win on May 1 and a 4-3 home victory in a barnburning thriller on June 16. SKC II have managed a scalp of their own, however, as they thrashed FC Tulsa by a 4-1 scoreline on June 2 as MLS homegrown trio Kaveh Rad, Cam Duke, Grayson Barber and rookie Rojay Smith all opened their professional scoring accounts at Children’s Mercy Park.
SKC II winger Enoch Mushalgalusa has bagged a team-leading seven goals this year, while Smith is close behind with five. Newly signed Sporting midfielder Jake Davis leads the side with five assists.
FC Tulsa, meanwhile, have received eight goals apiece from influential attackers Dario Suarez and Rodrigo da Costa as well as seven tallies from Marlon Santos. The club's roster also features former Sporting KC II playmaker Lebo Moloto, a talented South African who has added two goals and an assist in 15 appearances this year.
USL Championship: Match 26
Date: Friday, Sept. 24
Kickoff: 7 p.m. CT
Location: Children's Mercy Park (Kansas City, Kansas)
Live Stream: ESPN Plus
Sporting Kansas City II: 4-14-7, 19 points (8th place in Central Division)
FC Tulsa: 12-10-2, 38 points (3rd place in Central Division)
Match-specific hashtag: #SKCvTUL