As Sporting Kansas City prepares for its 26th season as a charter member of Major League Soccer, SportingKC.com is rolling out a 26-day countdown to the start of the 2021 campaign. A mouthwatering opening weekend of MLS action will see Sporting Kansas City visit the New York Red Bulls at 7 p.m. CT on April 17, giving supporters their first look at Manager Peter Vermes’ side since last December.
The 2021 Preseason Countdown, presented by Children’s Mercy, will serve as the comprehensive, go-to preview of everything that awaits Sporting Kansas City in the weeks and months to come. From key storylines and bold predictions to statistical breakdowns and players to watch, the 2021 Preseason Countdown will highlight the many reasons to be excited for what’s ahead. To visit the series homepage as it expands, visit SportingKC.com/2021countdown.
The vast majority of Sporting Kansas City's frequent flyer miles will see the club blaze west in 2021.
Manager Peter Vermes' side will embark on 17 regular season road trips between April 17 and Nov. 3, and only once will their travels take them to the Eastern Time Zone. That game, of course, comes in Week 1 when Sporting ventures to Red Bull Arena.
The next 16 away fixtures will either keep Sporting in the Central Time Zone or take them westward, including a challenging run of five straight road games that eclipse 1,350 miles one way to the Pacific Time Zone. Indeed, from May 22 to Aug. 4, Sporting will have three visits to California interlaced by matches at Portland and Seattle.
Although Sporting's month of August is road-heavy, their flights will be shorter. Following an Aug. 4 fixture at LAFC, Vermes' men will spend three straight Saturdays in cities that are comparatively close by: Denver, Dallas and Minneapolis. None of those flights are longer than 560 miles.
As is annually the case, Sporting's longest journey will take them to Vancouver, British Columbia, when the Whitecaps play host on Oct. 17.
Sporting's time zone breakdown for the club's 17 road fixtures includes one in the Eastern, six in the Central, two in the Mountain and eight in the Pacific. Only twice will Sporting play two away matches in last than a week: LAFC and Colorado on Aug. 4 and 7, followed later by Minnesota and Austin on Oct. 31 and Nov. 3.
Sporting's full regular season travel log is listed below, not taking into account potential mileage for potential matches in the Leagues Cup and MLS Cup Playoffs. Taking round trips into account, the club is slated to travel approximately 34,000 miles during the 2021 campaign.
|Date||Time (CT)||Opponent||One-Way Distance (Miles)|
|Saturday, April 17||7pm||at New York Red Bulls||1,094|
|Saturday, May 1||1pm||at Real Salt Lake||923|
|Wednesday, May 12||7:30pm||at Houston Dynamo FC||647|
|Saturday, May 22||9pm||at San Jose Earthquakes||1,482|
|Saturday, June 19||9:30pm||at Portland Timbers||1,494|
|Sunday, July 4||9:30pm||at LA Galaxy||1,354|
|Sunday, July 25||8pm||at Seattle Sounders FC||1,502|
|Wednesday, Aug. 4||9:30pm||at LAFC||1,354|
|Saturday, Aug. 7||8pm||at Colorado Rapids||557|
|Saturday, Aug. 14||7:30pm||at FC Dallas||454|
|Saturday, Aug. 21||2:30pm||at Minnesota United FC||412|
|Friday, Sept. 3||9pm||at LAFC||1,354|
|Wednesday, Sept. 29||7pm||at FC Dallas||454|
|Sunday, Oct. 17||9pm||at Vancouver Whitecaps FC||1,557|
|Saturday, Oct. 23||8pm||at Seattle Sounders FC||1,502|
|Sunday, Oct. 31||TBD||at Minnesota United FC||412|
|Wednesday, Nov. 3||8pm||at Austin FC||636|