Competition: Major League Soccer – Sporting Kansas City vs. Seattle Sounders
Venue: Sporting Park – Saturday, June 6 – 20:30 ET (01:30 BST)
Match Odds: Sporting KC 23/20 – Draw 23/10 – Seattle 12/5
Both sides are in fine form and are second and fourth in the MLS Supporters’ Shield standings going into the weekend.
Sporting Kansas City have only lost twice this season and have put together a fine run of late, going unbeaten through their last six, netting four goals in three of those games.Embed from Getty Images
They lead MLS in goals this year with 21 through 13 games and last Friday’s 4-0 home win against FC Dallas was probably their best performance of the season so far.
Peter Vermes has his side in good shape and they will be confident of taking points from the Sounders on Saturday night.
Seattle are also in good form, going unbeaten through their last four and winning three of those games, including a 2-1 win over the New York Red Bulls last Sunday thanks to a very late Chad Barrett tap in.
They are averaging more points on the road per game than any other team (1.67) and are starting to look more and more like the unstoppable force that won the MLS Supporters’ Shield last term.
They may have played out a 0-0 draw in Seattle two weeks ago but this should be a fascinating encounter between two teams that will be eyeing up MLS Cup success this season, even if both are missing key players.
Squad depth will be tested to the maximum this weekend for both teams and if either can win it will be a huge result.
Sporting Kansas City still have a large injury list as Ike Opara is out for numerous months still, while Chance Myers, Bernardo Anor and Paulo Nagamura are all unlikely to feature. Dom Dwyer, Seth Sinovic and Jacob Peterson are all doubts as Peter Vermes has his work cut out getting a team on the field that can win the game. Erik Palmer-Brown is away with the US U20’s and won’t feature, while Krisztian Nemeth is also unavailable as he is with the Hungarian national team.
Seattle Sounders boss Sigi Schmid could be without all three of his Designated Players this weekend as Osvaldo Alonso is suspended, Obafemi Martins has undergone nose surgery and Clint Dempsey could miss out as he awaits the birth of his fourth child. On top of that, Brad Evans is away with the US Men’s National Team and Gonzalo Pineda and Chad Barrett are both doubts.
Sporting Kansas City’s last five: W/D/W/D/W
Seattle Sounders’ last five: L/W/D/W/W
Key Stat: Sporting Kansas City have not beaten Seattle Sounders in nine league meetings since they won the first ever MLS game between the two in 2009 (D2 L7).
Key Player: Graham Zusi – The Sporting KC attacker put in a fine display last weekend, scoring his first of the season, and could prove to be the difference here.Embed from Getty Images
Sporting Kansas City 1-1 Seattle Sounders – These two look too close to separate this weekend and with both set to be without key names, it could be a nervy affair. They drew two weeks ago and a similar result looks to be on the cards here.