Sporting KC Weekly Update: November 30, 2016

PETER VERMES SIGNS CONTRACT EXTENSION WITH SPORTING KC
Sporting Kansas City announced on Tuesday the extension of Peter Vermes’ contract as manager and technical director of the club through the 2019 MLS season. Vermes has served as Sporting Kansas City’s manager since 2009, becoming the team’s all-time winningest coach and the eighth winningest coach in MLS regular season history. Over the last eight years, he has amassed 103 regular season wins (103-82-61) and 128 victories in all competitions (128-96-70). He has also hoisted three major trophies — the 2013 MLS Cup and the 2012 and 2015 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cups.

Vermes, 50, has led Sporting Kansas City to a club-record six straight playoff appearances since 2011. During this time period, he has become the third coach in league history to win at least 13 games in six consecutive regular seasons. He was named Kansas City’s technical director in 2006 and oversees all soccer operations at the club, including scouting, roster management and development of the Sporting Kansas City Academy. (Full story)

SPORTING KC ANNOUNCES ROSTER MOVES AHEAD OF 2017 SEASON
Sporting Kansas City last Wednesday that the club has exercised contract options for the following players ahead of the 2017 MLS season: Saad Abdul-Salaam, Benji Joya, Jimmy Medranda, Lawrence Olum and Seth Sinovic.

In addition, the following players are now out of contract with Sporting Kansas City: Nuno Andre Coelho, Kevin Ellis, Alec Kann, Chance Myers, Paulo Nagamura and Jacob Peterson. The club will extend offers to Ellis and Kann and negotiations for those two players are ongoing. Myers, Peterson and Nagamura are eligible for MLS free agency, which begins at the conclusion of the MLS Expansion Draft on Dec. 13.

Sporting Kansas City will not exercise contract options for Ever Alvarado, Emmanuel Appiah, Connor Hallisey, Jon Kempin and Justin Mapp. Kempin is eligible to participate in Major League Soccer’s Re-Entry Draft, with Stage One set for Dec. 16 and Stage Two on Dec. 22. As a free agent, Mapp may enter the Re-Entry Draft or begin free agent negotiations with clubs after the MLS Expansion Draft.

Sporting Kansas City currently has 17 players under contract for next year: the five players whose options were picked up as well as players already under contract for 2017: Matt Besler, Dom Dwyer, Roger Espinoza, Benny Feilhaber, Tim Melia, Soni Mustivar, Ike Opara, Erik Palmer-Brown, Cameron Porter, Diego Rubio, Daniel Salloi and Graham Zusi. For a full list of Sporting Kansas City’s offseason roster moves, visit SportingKC.com/tracker

RANGERS TO RETURN SIX PLAYERS FOR 2017 USL SEASON
The Swope Park Rangers will return six players from the side’s inaugural USL season, the club announced Monday. Captain Christian Duke, defender Amer Didic, forward Mark Anthony Gonzalez and forward Nansel Selbol have all had their contract options exercised, while Oumar Ballo has signed a new contract. All five transactions are pending USL and federation approval, while Selbol is also pending the receipt of his P-1 Visa. In addition, midfielder Kevin Oliveira is already under contract for the 2017 season. (Full story)

LINDSEY JOINS U.S. U-17S FOR NIKE INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLIES
Sporting KC Academy defender Jaylin Lindsey has been named to the United States U-17 National Team for the 13th annual Nike International Friendlies in Lakewood Ranch, Florida, taking place today through Sunday at Premier Sports Complex.

Lindsey joins a 20-player roster selected by head coach John Hackworth in an elite youth competition featuring four prominent national teams. The U.S. will face Portugal, Turkey and Brazil in a three-game round-robin competition, marking one of the premier events on the U.S. youth soccer calendar.

This year’s tournament features two games on each of the three match days. The U.S. battles Portugal tonight, then plays Turkey on Friday before finishing the competition Sunday against Brazil. All three U.S. matches will be broadcast live on ussoccer.com as well as the U.S. Soccer Facebook page and YouTube channel. (Full story)

SKC ACADEMY TO COMPETE IN USSDA WINTER SHOWCASE THIS WEEKEND
The Sporting Kansas City Academy U-18s and U-16s will compete in the 2016 U.S. Soccer Development Academy Winter Showcase, to be held Thursday through Monday at Premier Sports Campus in Lakewood Ranch, Florida.

The 2016 Winter Showcase includes 72 U-18 and 74 U-16 academy clubs from across the country, spanning 219 games over five days. The annual event will be held in conjunction with the 2016 Nike International Friendlies, a round-robin competition featuring the United States, Brazil, Portugal and Turkey U-17 national teams.

The Sporting KC U-18s and U-16s will play three games apiece, all of which against steams from other USSDA divisions. Led by head coach Jon Parry, the U-18s will face Orlando City SC, the Philadelphia Union and Weston FC (Florida). U-16 head coach Josh Gardner will lead his team versus Empire United (New York), Columbus Crew SC and the Philadelphia Union. (Full story)

ROCKHURST MEN HEADLINE D-II SOCCER CHAMPIONSHIPS AT SWOPE
The national semifinal matchups are set for the 2016 NCAA Division II Men’s and Women’s Soccer Championships, to be held Thursday and Saturday at Swope Soccer Village in Kansas City, Missouri.

Kansas City’s own Rockhurst University headlines the men’s field and will be joined by fellow semifinalists Charleston (W. Va.), Wingate (N.C.) and UC San Diego. On the women’s side, Columbus State (Ga.), Kutztown (Penn.) and Western Washington will look to dethrone three-time defending national champion Grand Valley State (Mich.).

Both tournaments will culminate with semifinal and championship matches at Children’s Mercy Victory Field in state-of-the-art Swope Soccer Village, hosted by the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association and the Kansas City Sports Commission. For ticket information, visit ncaa.com/tickets. Click here for the full championship schedule.

U-14S FINISH FOURTH AT PRESTIGIOUS COPA RAYADOS IN TEXAS
The Sporting Kansas City Academy U-14s earned a fourth-place finish at the prestigious Copa Rayados Internacional tournament last week in The Woodlands, Texas, advancing further in the U-15 age group than any other American club at this year’s competition.

Led by head coach Rumba Munthali, the Sporting KC U-14s played six games in five days between Wednesday and Sunday, finishing atop Group C with a 3-0-1 record before falling in the semifinal and third-place matches against Mexican opposition. The spirited performance included group stage victories over Santos Laguna, Houston Dynamo and Queretaro as well as a last-gasp draw against Inter Monterrey that proved decisive in Sporting KC’s advancement to the Gold Division semifinals. (Full story)

D-II FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP DEC. 17 AT CHILDREN'S MERCY PARK
The Division II Football Championship will take place at Children’s Mercy Park on Dec. 17 at 3 p.m. CT. Tickets for the match are now available and can be purchased at Ticketmaster.com or by calling 888-KC-GOAL.

Defending national champion Northwest Missouri State will enter Saturday's quarterfinal round on a 27-game winning streak, the longest active in college football. The Bearcats are the only team from Missouri or Kansas left in the tournament and are two victories away from returning to Children's Mercy Park, where they claimed the 2015 national title before a sold-out crowd.

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