"This Week in Sporting,” is a weekly series that highlights the biggest storylines and news updates from Sporting Kansas City.
1. We got the Cup
The FIFA World Cup 2026 is coming to Kansas City. Thursday, FIFA named the 16 host cities for the World’s largest sporting event set to take place in 2026 across three North American countries. Kansas City was among 11 American, three Mexican and two Canadian cities to be named hosts.
Host Cities (16): Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Guadalajara, Houston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Miami, Monterrey, New York/New Jersey, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seattle, Toronto, Vancouver
The matches will be held at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium in Jackson County Missouri in 2026 as the successful bid was co-chaired by Kansas City Chiefs Chairman and CEO Clark Hunt and Sporting Kansas City principal owner Cliff Illig. Leading the host city efforts was KC2026 Bid Director Katherine Holland who was supported by an Executive committee comprised of sports executives, government officials and civic representatives.
2. Open Cup
In other Cup news, the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Quarterfinals are here. After two, electrifying, comeback victories against FC Dallas, and the Houston Dynamo, Sporting Kansas City has advanced to the Open Cup Quarterfinals. Wednesday, June 22, they will host USL League One side Union Omaha at Children’s Mercy Park for the right to play in the semifinals of America’s longest-running tournament. Tickets are on sale for the match at SeatGeek.com as Sporting sets out in search of their MLS-leading fifth Open Cup title.
3. Sporting snaps Nashville’s streak
Sunday, Sporting KC faced Nashville SC in their brand-new Stadium, GEODIS Park, and handed the hosts their first home defeat in over two years, snapping a 25-match home unbeaten streak. Felipe Hernandez sank a free kick from 38-yards out, Graham Zusi blasted a shot into the goal from outside the box and Sporting KC claimed a victory in their first MLS match in Nashville.
With the win, Sporting is just four points off the playoff line with half of the season left to go. The team will wrap up a two-match road trip on Saturday with a trip to Lumen Field in a matchup with the Seattle Sounders at 2 p.m. CT. For the third week in a row, the match will be broadcast nationally and can be found on ABC.
4. Apple TV; your home for MLS starting in 2023
It was announced Tuesday that the Apple TV app would be the exclusive destination for every single live MLS match beginning in 2023. In a historic first for professional sports, fans from around the world will be able to watch all MLS and Leagues Cup matches as well as select MLS NEXT Pro and MLS NEXT competitions. Complete details for the new service, including when fans can sign up, subscription pricing and other specific details about the matches will be announced in the coming months.
5. SKC II suffers 2-1 defeat to St Louis
Friday Night under the lights, SKC II suffered a 2-1 defeat at the hands of St Louis City2 at Rock Chalk Park. Julian Vazquez fired the hosts out in front with a one-v-one goal following a precise, perfect pass from Josh Coan. Ethan Bandre earned his first professional start and made five crucial saves to keep SKC II in the match. Two quick goals from STL CITY2 gave them the lead and they held on to pick up their sixth consecutive result and take first place in the Frontier Division. SKC II is off this week but will be back at Rock Chalk Park on Saturday, July 2 for their final match in Lawrence of the 2022 season.
6. MLS NEXT Cup Playoffs Begin
Thanks to successful campaigns in the MLS NEXT regular season as well as an impressive showing at MLS NEXT Fest, the Sporting Kansas city U15s and U19s have qualified and will compete in the MLS NEXT Cup playoffs. The competition begins this weekend with the U15s opening their cup quest against Total Futbol Academy on Saturday at 9 a.m. CT. The U19s will face SF Glens in their opening round on Sunday at 11 a.m. CT. All matches will take place at Toyota Soccer Complex in Frisco, Texas. Fans can follow the Sporting KC Academy’s MLS NEXT Cup Playoffs journey by following @SKCAcademy on Twitter.