Kansas City Director of Athletics Dr. Brandon Martin and Sporting Kansas City President and CEO Jake Reid have announced an extension to the strategic partnership between Kansas City Athletics and Sporting Kansas City. This partnership will allow Kansas City Athletics to collaborate with one of the nation's premier professional soccer clubs.
"We are excited to partner with a respected brand and organization like Sporting," Dr. Martin said. "The Kansas City region is rich in talent for both men's and women's soccer. Given our goal to be a premier soccer program nationally, partnering with Sporting is necessary for continued elevation, exposure and growth for our programs. I want to thank Jake Reid, Peter Vermes and the Sporting leadership in their belief and commitment in our goal of comprehensive excellence."
Celebrating its 25th season as a charter member of Major League Soccer, Sporting enters 2020 on the heels of a transformational decade highlighted by four major championships and eight-straight playoff appearances under Manager and Sporting Director Peter Vermes. Sporting is a two-time MLS Cup champion and a four-time winner of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, establishing itself as one of the most successful teams in American soccer. Guided by the Sporting Club ownership group, Sporting has opened world-class facilities such as Children's Mercy Park, Swope Soccer Village, Wyandotte Sporting Fields and Pinnacle while investing in the Sporting KC Academy and Sporting Kansas City II for developing local youth into homegrown talent.
Specific elements of the partnership will include:
- Structured opportunities to visit Sporting KC training facilities
- Potential for KC Athletics to schedule non-conference competitions at Sporting's home stadium, Children's Mercy Park
- Opportunities for youth to develop their skills under the guidance of KC Athletics and Sporting soccer coaches and provide a pathway for their success to college and professional soccer
- Collaboration with Sporting leadership on cross-marketing opportunities, match presentation, fan development and experience
- Select opportunities for KC Athletics soccer coaches to participate in education workshops and training
- As part of the new Sporting U program, UMKC students will be allowed to attend Sporting Kansas City matches at a special rate with a valid college ID
"Partnering with Kansas City Athletics gives us the exciting opportunity to collaborate with a local college program and further support the development of men's and women's soccer players and coaches in Kansas City," Reid said. "Through a variety of unique programming and events, we look forward to elevating the sport in partnership with the Roos."
This unique partnership will significantly impact and enrich the experiences of current and future Kansas City soccer players, who play a vital role in the NCAA Division I programs at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. The Roo women's soccer team has won three conference championships in the last six years, finishing with a 13-4-4 record this past season. On the men's side this year, Kansas City captured the most wins since 2014.
Kansas City Athletics will conduct coaching searches for their men's and women's soccer programs throughout the month of January.