Phoenix Rising vs. Sporting Kansas City | 2019 Preseason Match Preview
|2019 MLS Preseason presented by Advocare|
|Phoenix Rising (trialists) vs Sporting Kansas City|
|Phoenix Rising Soccer Complex - Scottsdale, Ariz.|
|Wednesday, Jan. 23 — 12:30 PM ET|
|No stream or TV available|
After cruising to a 4-0 win over UPSL side Sporting Arizona in their preseason opener, Sporting Kansas City step up in class on Wednesday to face a squad of trialists for USL runners-up Phoenix Rising in a closed-door scrimmage.
Sporting Kansas City
Coach Peter Vermes' group got an ideal start to camp, with both his first group and reserves finding the back of the net against Sporting Arizona. Johnny Russell and Yohan Croizet scored before halftime, before a pair of Swope Park Rangers call-ups — Justin Bilyeu and Felipe Hernandez — sealed things.
Offseason pickup Rodney Wallace will look to continue fitting in with his new club after his cross set up Russell's goal.
“We played three different teams and mixed the group up quite a bit. I like the fact that all three teams resembled how we want to play,” Vermes said, via the club's website. “There’s already a good, solid foundation of fitness to be able to play 30 minutes like we did. All three teams got a clean sheet, and each group scored at least one goal, which was good as well.”
Phoenix Rising are a club looking to bolster their squad in the hope of taking a championship step in 2019 after falling just short last year. Famously led by player/co-owner/former Chelsea star Didier Drogba, Phoenix fell 1-0 at Louisville City FC in the 2018 USL Cup final on Nov. 8, a few weeks before SKC were eliminated in the MLS Western Conference Championship.
Phoenix will test a group of trialists for this match before facing SKC with their complete team in early February as one of four MLS opponents. They open USL play on March 9.