The Swope Park Rangers (1-7-4, 7 points) will play their second game in four days when they welcome Charlotte Independence (1-7-5, 8 points) to Children’s Mercy Park for the first time, with kickoff set for 4 p.m. CT. Tickets are available at SeatGeek.com or at the stadium box office beginning at 2 p.m. CT.
The match will be streamed live on ESPN+ and additional in-game updates will be up on the USL Championship MatchCenter. Fans can also follow @SwopeRangers on Twitter for live updates throughout the match.
In their game Wednesday, the Rangers lost in heartbreaking fashion to Loudoun United. In yet another highly competitive match, Felipe Hernandez scored his team-leading fifth goal, Wilson Harris scored his second, and Alexsander added his fourth and fifth assists. The Rangers put forth a solid fight, but Connor Presley’s goal in the 87th minute was all too much for the Rangers, and Loudoun United escaped with all three points. Before Wednesday’s loss, the Rangers had a nice streak of three straight home results. Six of their seven points have come at Children’s Mercy Park this season. They’ll look to regain that home momentum Saturday against Charlotte.
Charlotte enters this match without a win in their last seven USL Championship matches. In that span, they have drawn with the Tampa Bay Rowdies, Hartford Athletic, Nashville SC and the Pittsburgh Riverhounds. On the road this season Charlotte is 0-3-4. Last time out, they suffered a 4-1 defeat on the road to Ottawa Fury FC. Joel Johnson and Hugh Roberts received red cards, forcing the Independence to play with nine men. As a result, Johnson and Roberts will be suspended for the match with the Rangers.
Jim McGuinness is entering his first year as a coach in the USL Championship, but he has plenty of previous experience. The Irishman has worked for legendary club Celtic FC, and in the Chinese Super League, but he made his mark winning the All-Ireland Gaelic Football Championship. McGuinness is now taking on his first head soccer coaching position.
Leading the way in goals for the Independence is forward Dominic Oduro. The former MLS player has put five balls in the back of the net for Charlotte this season. That’s three more than anybody else on the team. Forward Enzo Martinez has assisted the most goals so far with four.
The Rangers continue to mix things up on the field. On Wednesday, their starting XI was the 12th different lineup combination to take the field. It was also the second-youngest group of starters with an average age of 20.4 years.
Alexsander (one goal, five assists) continues to strut his stuff for the Rangers. He bagged a brace of assists last time out bringing his season total up to five. He is now third in the league in assists. Hernandez (five goals, two assists) remains the biggest goal-scoring threat for the Rangers. The former Sporting KC Academy player scored yet again Wednesday night, marking his fourth goal in his last five games.
USL Championship: Game 13 of 34
Date: Saturday, June 8, 2019
Kickoff: 4:00 p.m. CT
Location: Children’s Mercy Park (Kansas City, Kansas)
Live Stream: ESPN+
Swope Park Rangers: 1-7-4 (7 points, 17th place in Eastern Conference)
MLS Affiliate: Sporting Kansas City
Charlotte Independence: 1-7-5 (8 points, 16th place in Eastern Conference)
MLS Affiliate: None