Sporting Kansas City announced Sunday that the club has signed defender Amer Didic and winger Tyler Pasher on short-term loans from the Swope Park Rangers ahead of Tuesday’s Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League match at Central FC in Trinidad and Tobago.
Didic and Pasher will join Sporting Kansas City for the trip to Ato Boldon Stadium in Couva, where the team will begin its 2016-17 CONCACAF Champions League campaign against the Trinidadian powerhouse. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. CT with an English-language live stream on SportingKC.com. A Spanish telecast of the match will also air live on Univision Deportes Network.
Both players will be available for selection Tuesday and for the remainder of the 2016-17 CONCACAF Champions League group stage. Per league rules, MLS clubs can sign players from their USL affiliate to Short Term Agreements (up to four-day contracts) for CONCACAF Champions League, U.S. Open Cup and exhibition matches. An MLS club can sign a player to a maximum of four short term agreements each season.
Didic has started 14 of 21 USL appearances during his rookie campaign in the United Soccer League. The 21-year-old center back has thrived over the last two months, earning USL Team of the Week honors three times since June 27 while starting each of the club’s previous eight games.
Born in Bosnia and raised in Edmonton, Canada, Didic played four years of college soccer at Baker University in nearby Baldwin City, Kansas, where he was a two-time NAIA All-American. As a senior last fall, the 6-foot-4 defender was an NSCAA All-American and the Heart of America Athletic Conference Most Valuable Player.
Pasher has netted three goals in 17 USL matches since signing for the Rangers in March. The 22-year-old Canadian has been a versatile piece to head coach Marc Dos Santos’ roster, featuring at left wing and left back throughout the season. He netted both goals in a 2-1 win over Tulsa Roughnecks FC on May 14 and scored the winner as SPR beat Saint Louis FC 1-0 on July 2.
Pasher began his youth career with Newcastle United in England before joining Toronto FC’s Academy in 2010. A former member of Canada’s U-17 and U-20 national teams, he has previously played for Finnish side PS Kemi (2013), NPSL outfit Lansing United (2014) and the USL’s Pittsburgh Riverhounds (2015).
Sporting KC 2016-17 Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League schedule
|Date||Opponent||Time (CT)||Spanish TV||English
|Tuesday, Aug. 16||at Central FC||7 p.m.||UDN||SportingKC.com|
|Tuesday, Aug. 23||at Vancouver Whitecaps FC||9 p.m.||UDN *||SportingKC.com|
|Tuesday, Sept. 13||VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC||7 p.m.||UDN||SportingKC.com|
|Wednesday, Oct. 19||CENTRAL FC||7 p.m.||UDN||SportingKC.com|
* Tape delay to air Aug. 24 at 1 a.m. CT
The 2016-17 Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League will feature the top 24 teams from North America, Central America and the Caribbean region battling for a berth in the 2017 FIFA Club World Cup. The group stage divides the teams into eight groups of three and will be contested in a round-robin, home-and-away format. The eight group winners will then advance to the knockout round, with the two-legged quarterfinals currently slated for Feb. 21 - March 2, 2017.
Sporting Kansas City was placed in Group C alongside Central FC and fellow MLS club Vancouver Whitecaps FC. Manager Peter Vermes' men are competing in the tournament for the third time in four seasons, having qualified for the 2016-17 edition by virtue of its 2015 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup title.
Amer Didic (UH-meer JEE-ditch)
Weight: 195 lbs.
College: Baker University
Hometown: Edmonton, Alberta
Birthplace: Zenica, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Weight: 160 lbs.
Hometown: Elmira, Ontario
Birthplace: Elmira, Ontario