Sporting Kansas City vs. Minnesota United FC | How to watch and stream
Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs – Conference Semifinals
Sporting Kansas City vs. Minnesota United FC
Children's Mercy Park – Kansas City
December 3 – 8:30 PM ET
TV: FOX, FOX Deportes, TSN 4, TVA Sports
STREAMING: FOX Sports App in US
Upsets against the top two seeds in the East opened the door for Sporting Kansas City to have home field advantage throughout the remainder of the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs, but Minnesota United will come to Children's Mercy Park confident coming off their first playoff win when the sides square off Dec. 3 in the Western Conference Semifinals.
The winner meets either Seattle Sounders FC or FC Dallas for a right to play in the MLS Cup Final on Dec. 12.
Sporting survived a Round One scare, advancing past the San Jose Earthquakes with Tim Melia providing the penalty-kick shootout heroics again, while the Loons enjoyed the most comfortable win of the opening round, defeating the Colorado Rapids 3-0 at Allianz Field.
This is the fifth meeting between the teams this season. They played to a 0-0 draw at Children's Mercy Park a month ago. SKC won the previous two matchups, including 1-0 at Children's Mercy Park on Sept. 13 after the Loons were victorious at the MLS is Back Tournament in July.
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Sporting Kansas City
Peter Vermes expected a tricky Round One match against the Earthquakes and it duly delivered, with Sporting advancing via a penalty-kick shootout after the teams played to a scintillating 3-3 draw after 120 minutes Sunday at Children's Mercy Park.
Gianluca Busio appeared to score the dramatic stoppage-time equalizer after a sensational back-heel from Khiry Shelton. But Chris Wondolowski leveled for the Quakes at the death. Melia would place himself in the record books by saving all three San Jose shootout attempts to send SKC through.
“Part of the playoffs always is kind of getting through that first game,” a relieved Sporting manager Peter Vermes said postgame, explaining how difficult Quakes coach Matias Almeyda’s high-risk, man-marking system is to prepare for. “This opponent was incredibly difficult for so many reasons. I think their system of play, it's not what you see on a regular basis as a team. And so we tried to mimic them for two weeks in training, and it's hard because our players don't play that way.
“So I give them a lot of credit. They played very well, they have a great mentality, they work – their effort, their work ethic was tremendous. At the end, look, Timmy, I've never seen that done by goalkeeper ever before. So survive, win, move on, get ready for the next game: That is for sure the mantra of the playoffs.”
In an opening round of the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs known for dramatic penalty-kick shootouts and games decided by razor-thin margins, Minnesota United claimed the round's most lopsided win, defeating the Rapids 3-0 at Allianz Field. It was the Loons first playoff win in their second appearance after losing at home to the LA Galaxy a year ago.
Kevin Molino struck for a brace, Robin Lod added a goal and Emanuel Reynoso had a pair of assists to lead the way in an emphatic victory.
“I’m pleased for the group, I’m pleased for our supporters more than anything, and pleased for our ownership group, because I think they’re starting to see the investments on the field now starting to take shape,” Adrian Heath said after the game, noting that his team’s growth represents the maturation of a long-term plan that began with some real suffering in their first two years in MLS.
“It shows that we're progressing, which is always the name of the game,” he added. “We're not standing still, we're moving forward.”
Series Matchup at Sporting KC
- Sporting KC: 5 wins, 11 goals
- Minnesota United: 0 wins, 1 goal
- 1 draw
MLS Cup Playoffs
- This is the first all-time Audi MLS Cup Playoffs meeting between Sporting Kansas City and Minnesota United
- Referee: Drew Fischer
- Assistant Referees: Kathryn Nesbitt, Peter Manikowski
- 4th Official: Victor Rivas
- VAR: Edvin Jurisevic