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Mailbag answers for November

Fun to talk soccer and answering questions is a good reason.

MLS: Sporting Kansas City at Real Salt Lake
A photo from the snow game for no reason other than it’s fun to have a snow game photo.
Jeffrey Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

Mike and I like to get together to discuss soccer occasionally and we have made a few videos so far. With a little time in between games, we took questions from readers on twitter and here on TBT.

A couple questions came in late and Mike answered them in writing below.

1) This one might be dumb, but is there any world in which Winston Reid’s loan gets

extended? West Ham seems to have moved on and a transfer to another big team

seems unlikely considering his age and injury history. Would they be willing to eat

the lion’s share of his salary on another loan or has his time with us been short and


There’s been no further word on the status of Winston Reid when his loan expires at

the end of the year. He is still reportedly under contract with West Ham until the

summer of 2023, so there will still be two and a half years still on his contract when

the loan expires. As he’s gotten his form back, he’s proven to still be a very capable

defender. If he has ambitions of returning to England and fighting for a place at

West Ham, I’d guess there’d be interest from teams in England to attempt to play

himself back to West Ham. It’s possible that KC could make a play to keep him

either permanently or try to extend the loan. It’d all be about West Ham’s

willingness on the loan and Reid’s interest.

2) With the MLS Reserves League starting, do we think Sporting 2 will continue to

compete in the USL Championship for the foreseeable future? Obviously, PV would

prefer it due to the greater challenge, but considering our venue and attendance

issues will we be able to stay?

About a month ago, Peter Vermes during a press conference said that Sporting KC II

would remain in the USL Championship for now and that they’d reevaluate when

other options presented themselves. So, for now Sporting KC II will be in the USL

Championship, but how long may remain to be seen. Vermes in the past has said

that he wants players playing for their second team playing at the highest level


The question personally for the MLS reserve league will be the level of play and how

serious teams will take it. Will the reserve league be as competitive as the USL

Championship? Will some teams take the MLS reserve league serious enough to

make it competitive? And then there are questions about the USL itself. Will the USL

continue to want MLS “2” teams in the league given that many have struggled not

just on the field but in the stands as well? Since the partnership between MLS and

the USL started the USL has grown in the number of independent teams and

interest in future expansion in the league is there, they don’t need the MLS “2”

teams to help them make it anymore.

3) As you mentioned SKC history...

I didn’t start following the team closely until well after the rebuild (primarily due to

life factors). I ran across a mention somewhere that there had been a plan for an

urban stadium that got derailed by the 2008 financial crisis and they ended out in

the boonies instead. I’d be interested to know more about that arc and if you have

any insights into the long-term plans for CMP. For example, have there ever been

(or might there be) plans for transit between city and stadium on game days? I’d

love to be able to stay in KC on visits and go to games without driving all the way

out there.

The 2008 stadium location wasn’t much more urban than where they currently area,

but was in Kansas City, Missouri. The then Kansas City Wizards had worked out a TIF

deal with Kansas City to turn the former Bannister Mall site into a stadium complex

with youth fields, shopping, and businesses, similar to how it is out at the Legends

now. One of the reasons the site never happened was because the club had asked

the city to help back the TIF bonds that weren’t being bought up because of the

financial crisis. When Wyandotte County stepped in offering to utilize STAR Bonds

that the Legends area was ahead on paying back the shift to the Kansas side


Note from Thad: Kansas City seemed to be going through a fight between the city council and the mayor at that time in addition to the financial crisis. With their attention focused internally on the mayor’s wife, nothing was proceeding that would help the Bannister site be built. It did end up being large office building for Cerner so the Missouri side still added jobs in that area but the needed shopping and entertainment did not occur.

There had also been an effort, if not a full-fledged plan to build a stadium in southern Johnson County that was blocked before the Bannister location.

As for plans to add transit, I know it’s something that’s been brought up in the past

to the front office. I know there used to be a bus that you could buy tickets for that

would go from Johnny’s Tavern in the Power and Light District to the stadium and

take you back after the game, but that stopped due to lack of interest. As for a

permanent route, I’m not aware of one in the works.

A fan taking look at the proposed “the Trails” plan at Bannister Mall.
Thad Bell

4) Have there been any updates to the rumored signings this year (i.e. Juanpi) or any

other rumors and any thoughts as to who may leave after the season (not just

opinion of who should leave, but credible thoughts).

There are no rumors that I’ve seen making the rounds since around September.

Juanpi signed with Al-Ain FC in Saudi Arabia so he won’t be a target come 2021.

There are some salaries that will be coming off the books ahead of the 2021 season, Matt Besler, Roger Espinoza, Gerso Fernandes, and Erik Hurtado are all out of contract at the

end of the 2020 season. That’s a decent amount of salary that could open up for KC,

though I think Espinoza and Fernandes could be brought back. Thad and I discussed

Hurtado a little bit and he could be looking to get more playing time next year.

Overall, there may not be a ton of turnover between 2020 and 2021 in this Sporting


5) Also is there an MLS expansion draft this of season and who do we protect if so?

Luckily, Kansas City is exempt from participating in this year’s expansion draft for

Austin FC as the club had Jimmy Medranda selected last year by Nashville SC.