"This Week in Sporting," presented by The Smile Generation, is a weekly series that highlights the biggest storylines and news updates from Sporting Kansas City. To visit the series archive, click here.
1. Out of the Running
Sporting Kansas City suffered a season-ending 3-0 loss to Minnesota United FC on Thursday night in the Western Conference Semifinals of the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs at Children’s Mercy Park. Minnesota struck three first-half goals in the space of 12 minutes—receiving a Kevin Molino brace, a Bakaye Dibassy header and three assists from Emanuel Reynoso—to claim their first win in seven tries at Children’s Mercy Park and advance to the Western Conference Final on Monday at Seattle Sounders FC.
Sporting’s 2020 campaign ends after the club claimed its fourth first-place conference finish in the last 10 seasons under Manager Peter Vermes and finished with a club-record 1.86 points per game over the course of 21 MLS matches.
2. Into the Offseason
With the 2020 campaign in the rearview mirror, Sporting Kansas City will now prepare for an all-important offseason. The club will announce a series of roster moves in the coming days before MLS enters a busy period of roster-building events beginning with a half-day trade window this Sunday.
- Sunday, Dec. 13: Half-day trade window (8 a.m. to 12 p.m. CT)
- Tuesday, Dec. 15: MLS Expansion Draft (time TBD)
- Wednesday, Dec. 16: End-of-Year Waivers (12 p.m. CT)
- Wednesday, Dec. 16: Free Agency opens (12 p.m. CT)
- Thursday, Dec. 17: Re-Entry Process, Stage 1 (time TBD)
- Tuesday, Dec. 22: Re-Entry Process, Stage 2 (time TBD)
3. Home of Sporting
‘Tis the season for terrific holiday deals, and there is no better time to stock up on winter gear or pick out gifts for friends and family. With that in mind, Sporting Kansas City fans can shop conveniently on SportingStyle.com for 50% off all home items on Monday and Tuesday this week.
Once orders are placed online, guests can pick up their home items curbside at Children's Mercy Park, just outside the Budweiser Brew House at the corner of Village West Parkway and France Family Drive. Click here for directions. Upon arrival to the Budweiser Brew House, guests can text their order number to 913-325-2916 for curbside delivery. Please note that the promotion is available exclusively on SportingStyle.com.
4. Academy Spotlight
Audi and Bleacher Report released Episode 4 of "THE ACADEMY" last week, shining a spotlight on the Sporting Kansas City Academy and its youth talent development system. "THE ACADEMY" provides an all-access look at the commitments and sacrifices that young athletes make within the Sporting KC Academy. The five-part series gives fans a first-hand account of how Sporting Kansas City and Audi are working to ensure the next generation of athletes is ready to compete at an elite level.
5. Seven-Year Anniversary
Seven years ago today, dreams came true in Sporting blue. On Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013, Sporting Kansas City lifted their second MLS Cup championship at the expense of rivals Real Salt Lake. In one of the most iconic matches in Major League Soccer history, Manager Peter Vermes' men prevailed in a 10-round penalty shootout following a tense 1-1 draw in which Alvaro Saborio and Aurelien Collin traded second-half goals.
6. MLS Cup on Saturday
Major League Soccer will crown a champion on Saturday when Columbus Crew SC hosts either Seattle Sounders FC or Minnesota United FC on Saturday night at MAPFRE Stadium. National coverage will begin at 7 p.m. CT on FOX in what could be the final professional match at the league's first-ever soccer-specific stadium, as Crew SC will move into a new venue next year.
Traveling to Columbus will be the winner of tonight's Western Conference Final between Seattle and Minnesota, which will kick off at 8:30 p.m. CT on FS1. Minnesota has reached the conference finals for the first time after posting 3-0 wins over Colorado and Sporting, while Seattle have made routine work of LAFC and FC Dallas as reigning MLS Cup champions.
7. Tune In Wednesday
The 2020 season finale of the Sporting Kansas City Show will debut at 7 p.m. CT Wednesday on Sports Radio 810 WHB as host Nate Bukaty, Carter Augustine and Aly Trost put a bow on the MLS campaign and hear from Manager Peter Vermes. Previous episode of the Sporting Kansas City Show are available here.