Sporting Kansas City are back in action on the road against Club de Foot Montreal at Stade Saputo. Check out our match preview before getting to the injury updates and lineup predictions.
- How to Watch
- Injury Updates for Montreal
- and Predictions
QUESTIONABLE - Graham Zusi (quad)
#SportingKC Injury/Availability Report:— Chad Smith (@PlayFor90) July 8, 2022
OUT - Cisneros (hamstring), Ford (concussion protocol), Pulido (knee), Kinda (knee)
QUESTIONABLE - Zusi (quad)
No changes other than Vujnovic is still on it but has since had his loan terminated. #MTLvSKC #CFMTL
No changes to the injury report this week. So while there was no noticeable progress, there were also no setbacks.
Starting XI Predictions
I thought things were clicking against the New York Red Bulls in all areas except one.
Johnny Russell is still the best forward on the team and is playing the best of all of them, but he hasn’t scored in a league game since June 12th against the New England Revolution. Daniel Salloi scored two against Union Omaha in the Open Cup but hasn’t scored in league play since the Colorado Rapids game on May 18th when he had a brace (he did spend some time overseas with Hungary).
Khiry Shelton on the other hand hasn’t scored, or assisted, all year in league play. Our own Mike Kuhn put out a thought experiment on Twitter on the 4th about it.
Here's a thought exercise for you as you watch fireworks. Counting ONLY field players, how many players have played more minutes without a goal or an assist than Shelton? How many of them are NOT listed as defenders?#SportingKC— Mike (@downthebyline) July 5, 2022
The answer: 19. Only two of them are midfielders and none of them are forwards. Definitely none of them are strikers.
The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. I thought Sporting looked motivated against RBNY and were on the front foot. But they can’t seem to score having been shut out in back-to-back games.
I’ve gone on the record saying I think Khiry is better suited at RW (and as a backup) and, while it’s not Russell’s best spot, putting him in front of goal seems like a better idea. For his part, Shelton talked about this on No Other Pod this week, which is worth a listen. I don’t expect any change here yet as Marinos Tzionis hasn’t played or practiced his way into the starting lineup yet but even a midfielder at the false 9, like Felipe Hernandez did a few weeks back, may be more promising.
What About the New Signings?
It’s true that the new guys, William Agada (CF) and Erik Thommy (winger/midfielder) are eligible to join Sporting Kansas City in a broad sense as the secondary transfer window opened yesterday. However, as we let you know earlier in the week, they haven’t arrived in country yet and are waiting on their immigration paperwork. Hopefully something moves on that front soon. Peter addressed it today when talking with the media.
“I wish I could tell you more,” started Vermes. “It’s in this... space in immigration where it just sits there. There is no way to figure out what’s actually going on and why it’s taking so long. Everything’s been done. All the paperwork has been filled out... It’s a conundrum and it’s incredibly frustrating.”
Until the P1 Visa is approved and the players have their passports returned, they can’t travel. Sporting play three times in nine days, so it’s unclear if they’ll be available for the #roaddron friendly Minnesota United game next week on Wednesday or the following weekend game. The Blue Testament will keep you updated.
More KP Please
Graham Zusi going down with his second injury of the season that’s cost him games has opened a door. Last time out Kayden Pierre, who is just 19-years-old, earned his first MLS start and he impressed. There is definite room for growth but I personally hope to see lots more of him, especially with this season looking like a lost one from a results stand point. No reason to not make the right back of the future the right back of the present.
The Other Spots
- The Cam Duke and Hernandez midfield is growing with Remi Walter behind them. It’s not perfect, but it’s probably the best option right now.
- The rest of the backline likely remains unchanged, as well as Melia in goal.
Rest of the 20: Pulskamp, Tzionis, Sweat, Espinoza, Voloder, K. Rad, Rosell, Davis, [1 empty]
In the press conference today Peter said the team didn’t have 20 healthy players to fill out this roster, which aligns with what we’ve seen in recent weeks. He also said everyone will be needed this week with it being a triple game week. It’ll be interesting to see how true that is for guys like Jake Davis and Kaveh Rad who haven’t played at all in 2022 (Rad) or much (Davis).
It’s boring, but we keep agreeing on the vote, but choices are limited. With Vujnovic out of the vote starting next week, that should free up some votes. Hopefully we’ll get word on the new guys and get them into the poll soon.
Here is the tally of your fan vote. Starters in italics and anyone over five percent is referenced here.
Goalkeepers: Melia (96.2%)
Defenders: Ndenbe (100%), Pierre (88.5%), Isimat-Mirin (80.8%), Fontas (50.0%), Ford (38.5%), Voloder (23.1%), Zusi (11.5%)
Midfielders: Hernandez/Walter (96.2%), Duke (65.4%), Espinoza (23.1%), Tzionis (7.7%)
Wingers: Salloi (96.2%), Russell (69.2%), Tzionis (19.2%), Shelton (11.5%), Duke (7.7%)
Strikers: Shelton (42.3%), Russell (26.9%), Tzionis (15.4%), Salloi/Vujnovic (7.7%)
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