Sporting Kansas City vs. Minnesota United FC | 2018 MLS Match Preview
Sporting Kansas City vs. Minnesota United FC
2018 MLS Regular Season – Week 14
Children’s Mercy Park — Kansas City
June 3 - 8:30 pm ET
WATCH: FS1 MLS LIVE on DAZN (Canada)
Undefeated in their last four games, but coming off consecutive draws, Sporting Kansas City know to stave off surging FC Dallas and LAFC to remain atop the Western Conference a result against Minnesota United FC is paramount Sunday at Children’s Mercy Park.
Minnesota and Sporting Kansas City have split their four all-time meetings, with one win and two draws each, per Opta.
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Sporting Kansas City
In an MLS Supporters' Shield showdown against Columbus Crew SC Sunday, Peter Vermes made just one change to his starting XI from the side that tied the Loons, with Seth Sinovic coming in for an injured Jimmy Medranda at left back.
Neither team on Sunday were able to grab control of the match, with Tim Melia saving a Gyasi Zardes penalty kick and Sporting Kansas City (7-2-4) unable to capitalize on playing the entire second half with an extra man after Federico Higuain was sent off in first-half stoppage time as the teams played to an entertaining 0-0 draw.
“Even if they would have scored that goal, my opinion is you’ve got to find a way to get back into the game,” Vermes said after the game. “You still have a lot of time to win so, for sure, points dropped – no doubt about it.”
- Suspended: None
- Suspended after next caution: None
- International duty: Johnny Russell
- Injury Report: OUT: M - Felipe Gutierrez (sports hernia surgery); QUESTIONABLE: F - Diego Rubio (back injury), D - Jimmy Medranda (undisclosed injury)
Projected Starting XI
(4-3-3, right to left)
GK: Tim Melia — Graham Zusi, Ike Opara, Matt Besler, Seth Sinovic — Roger Espinoza, Ilie Sanchez, Yohan Croizet — Gerso Fernandes, Khiry Shelton, Daniel Salloi
- Notes: Sporting Kansas City has averaged 59.3 percent of possession in their games this season, the second most in the league. Last year, they were second in the league with 57.7 percent of possession. … Sporting Kansas City have lost just one of their last 12 games (7W-4D), outscoring opponents 24-11 in the process.
Minnesota United FC
Adrian Heath made three changes to his starting XI from the side that drew Sporting, with Tyrone Mears and Eric Miller playing wide in the four-man backline and Ibson coming in for Collin Martin in the midfield.
“I thought the first 25 minutes was as bad as we’ve played all season. I thought we were lackluster, lack of energy, lack of desire,” Heath said after the game. “That second half we played like I want us to play, we got them out of their comfort zone and put them on the back foot and suddenly we looked like we could play."
- Suspended: None
- Suspended after next caution: M - Rasmus Schuller, D - Francisco Calvo
- International duty: D - Francisco Calvo
- Injury Report: OUT: M - Sam Cronin (cervicogenic dysfunction), M - Kevin Molino (torn left ACL), M - Ethan Finlay (torn ACL), D - Marc Burch (left knee surgery), GK - Matt Lampson (right knee injury)
Projected Starting XI
(4-2-3-1, right to left)
GK: Bobby Shuttleworth — Tyrone Mears, Michael Boxall, Brent Kallman, Eric Miller — Rasmus Schuller, Ibson — Miguel Ibarra, Darwin Quintero, Alexi Gomez — Christian Ramirez
- Notes: The Loons have lost four straight games on the road and have been outscored 11-3 in those games. Another loss would tie their franchise record for most consecutive league losses. … Francisco Calvo has 116 headed clearances since the start of last season. Only Costa Rican teammate Kendall Waston (132) from Vancouver Whitecaps FC has more.
- Overall: Sporting Kansas City 1 win, 5 goals … Minnesota United FC 1 win, 4 goals … 2 ties
- At Kansas City: Sporting Kansas City 1 win, 3 goals, Minnesota United F 0 wins, 0 goals … 0 ties
- Last meeting at Kansas City: Sporting Kansas City 3, Minnesota United FC 0 (June 3, 2017)
Referee: Drew Fischer
Assistant Referees: Gianni Facchini, Adam Garner
4th Official: Alejandro Mariscal
VAR: Edvin Jurisevic