Sporting Kansas City II

SKC II Match Preview: Sporting KC II takes on Ventura County FC in Saturday afternoon road test 


Sporting Kansas City II (3-2-0, 9 points) is set to take on Ventura County FC (4-1-0, 12 points) at Dignity Health Sports Park on Saturday afternoon in their second matchup of the 2024 MLS NEXT Pro season. The two sides last met on March 24 at Rock Chalk Park where Ventura County took home a 3-1 win. Since then, both teams have posted records of 2-1-0 and sit atop their respective divisions entering Saturday.

The match can be streamed on MLS Season Pass on Apple TV and will kick off at 3 p.m. CT.

After slipping to a home defeat against Ventura, a 10-man Sporting KC II side fell to St. Louis CITY2 before rattling off back-to-back wins. In their most recent outing, SKC II defeated Dynamo Dos 4-0 at Children's Mercy Victory Field in the group's first clean sheet of 2024. Four different goal-scorers tallied as the high-octane offense of Sporting KC II kept up their goal-scoring form from the past two seasons.

As a club, SKC II is tied for the most goals scored in MLS NEXT Pro this season (13), sitting atop the charts with this weekend's opposition and New York Red Bulls II. Pacing the group in goals so far has been Canadian midfielder Kamron Habibullah. The newcomer has four goals, three of which came from a hat trick against Colorado Rapids 2 which earned him Player of Matchweek 4 honors, and ranks second in MLS NEXT Pro in the goals scored category. He has found the back of the net in back-to-back matches, scoring the second goal against Houston last Sunday.

Forward Beto Avila ranks second with three goals scored and has one assist as well. Rookie winger Maouloune Goumballe netted the opener in the 4-0 trouncing giving him two scores this season. Sebastian Cruz and Medgy Alexandre scored the final two against Houston marking Alexandre's first pro goal and Cruz's first of 2024.

Cruz paces the team in assists with three, tied with midfielder Ethan Bryant. Both SKC II midfielders are tied for the second most assists in the league, two behind Ventura County player Jonathan Perez. Joining the pair in the midfield will be Sporting KC II's newest signing Cielo Tschantret. The Sporting KC Academy product inked his first pro deal earlier this week after making nine appearances as an amateur player.

On the backline, first team loanee centerback Chris Rindov and outside back Nati Clarke have started all five matches this season. Rindov is the only player to play all 450 minutes while Clarke has logged 405 in his first pro season. Goalkeeper and first team loanee Ryan Schewe is one of two goalkeepers to start five matches so far this season. He has a record of 3-2-0 and picked up his first professional clean sheet against Houston.

Ventura enters the weekend on top of the Western Conference, and one point back of the MLS NEXT Pro Supporters' Shield. The Matt Taylor-led squad produced four straight wins to open the campaign, however they are fresh off a defeat to LAFC 2.

Their dynamic offense is led by midfielder Gino Vivi and his four goals scored. Forwards Aaron Bibout and Ruben Ramos Jr both have four goal contributions to their name, with Bibout scoring against SKC II in March. Their leading goal contributor is Jonathan Perez with one goal and five assists collected so far.

Match Information:

MLS NEXT Pro: Matchweek 6
Date: Saturday, April 20, 2024
Kickoff: 3 p.m. CT
Location: Dignity Health Sports Park (Carson, CA)


Match-specific hashtag: #VCFCvSKC