Sporting Kansas City tries to get back to their winning ways against New England Revolution

Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

Sporting KC welcomes the New England Revolution as they try and shake off their two-match losing skid.

After getting three points in Nicaragua to open up Champions League play, Sporting KC will try and parlay that type of winning style into league play as they take on the New England Revolution. With places in the Supporter's Shield race and playoff race starting to close up, both of these teams will be looking to take three points from this match as they meet for the second time this year.

About the Teams

Sporting Kansas City

After falling twice in two weeks to Montreal and New York respectively, Sporting finds themselves sitting in second place in the Eastern Conference, two points down of the Red Bulls. They also fell to third in the Supporters Shield race, but only two points down from Real Salt Lake. They're in striking distance of the top, but they need to pick up points in every game possible. That may be hard to do after most of the team travelled to Real Esteli this Wednesday and playmaking midfielder Graham Zusi being ruled as questionable for this match.

New England Revolution

The Revolution have been an up and down team and find themselves sitting in sixth place in the Eastern Conference. They have three points less and one game more than fifth place Houston and need some points to try and stay in the playoff race. They had a busy week with transfers, acquiring Charlie Davies while terminating the contract of Kalifa Cisse and Juan Agudelo signing a "pre-contract" with Stoke City. They are one of the better road teams in the league, compiling a 4-4-3 record which is only one win short of Sporting KC's home record at 5-4-3.

Players to Watch

Sporting Kansas City- Kei Kamara

Kei Kamara is coming off of a great game this past Saturday where he scored a goal and contributed an assist in Sporting's 3-2 loss to the Red Bulls. Kamara has been a big part of Sporting's offense ever since he game back by providing several opportunities and knocking in several of his own. New England has a strong back line that will require a strong forward to get through. With Kei Kamara's recent form, he will be instrumental in getting Sporting Kansas City some points in this match.

New England Revolution- Saer Sene

Sene is one of those players who can do some real damage on the flanks if a team isn't ready for him. Watching Sporting's defense get mutilated by New York's high line last week, Sene may be ready to do some damage this week. His speed and ability to create can be worrisome for the Sporting fullbacks if they aren't in a position to defend him on a counter. Chance Myers or Seth Sinovic, depending on which side he's on, will be put in charge of shutting down Sene and not allowing the Revolution to score any goals off of counters.

How they will win

Sporting Kansas City

While New England holds the league lead for fewest goals allowed, they are middle of the pack in goals scored. Without Juan Agudelo in the lineup, their chances of scoring go down. Agudelo is once again out for tomorrow's match and the Revolution offense will suffer because of it. Sporting needs to hold tight down on the defensive end and hope for a chance to get past their defense. If Sporting allows a goal, getting past the strong Revolution defense is going to be a difficult task based on their history.

New England Revolution

Sporting may or may not be without Graham Zusi, who is ruled as questionable for this match. If he does not play, the Revolution will have a much easier task of trying to shut down the midfield. The four midfielders that the Revolution play need to converge on the Sporting defensive half and not allow Rosell, the fullbacks or Joseph to get any chances up to Feilhaber and the forwards. I say this a lot, but the midfield battle between the two teams will make or break the game in favor of one of them.

Predictions

Lineups

Sporting KC: Nielsen, Myers, Collin, Besler, Sinovic, Rosell, Joseph, Feilhaber, Kamara, Bieler, Saad

New England: Tierney, Goncalves, McCarthy, Farrell, Simms, Fagundez, Nguyen, Toja, Sene, Imbongo Boele

Score

Sporting KC 1-0 New England

New England's defense is tough. So is Sporting's. However Sporting has an offense that's been scoring goals lately and I believe they'll be able to eke one out against the Revolution.

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