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MLS: LA Galaxy at Sporting Kansas City

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Sporting KC v LA Galaxy: Preview, Predictions & How to Watch

10 games to go in a miserable 2022 season for Sporting Kansas City. No time like the present to snag a few wins.

 Los Angeles Galaxy goalkeeper Jonathan Bond (1) and Sporting Kansas City midfielder Roger Espinoza (15) argue after a play during the first half at Children’s Mercy Park.
| Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Sporting KC vs LA Galaxy

When: Saturday, August 6th, 2022 at 7:30 PM CT (Kickoff 7:33)

Where: Children’s Mercy Park

How to Watch/Stream: 38 the Spot | UniMas | TUDN | Twitter (English Stream)

Things for Sporting Kansas City are beyond desperate. They have lost six of their last seven league games, with only a draw at Minnesota United sprinkled in the middle. This was supposed to be the portion of the schedule that saved SKC’s season as they’ve had a run of home games in a row. Instead, they have lost five straight league home games and haven’t won a non-US Open Cup game at home since May 18th against the Colorado Rapids.

If there was any doubt left in your mind, let’s clear it up. Sporting KC aren’t making the playoffs, though they aren’t technically eliminated. Theoretically if they win nine of their last 10 games, they could possibly squeak in. But past performance is often indicative of how things will go in the future. There could be some aberrations, but almost tripling their win total seems out of reach.

As for Kansas City’s opponent, the LA Galaxy have lots to play for. They currently sit in 9th place, two spots (and two points) below Nashville SC for the final playoff spot, and the Galaxy have a game in hand. A win over SKC vaults them into a playoff position, so they are coming in motivated.

Despite that, the Galaxy are in terrible form. It seems KC keep getting lucky and playing teams down on their luck, but it turns out the other team is lucky because they are playing Kansas City. I don’t know about you all, but I still am having trouble coming to terms with KC being a bad team after being good for so long. Are they the best last place team?

Galaxy’s Recent Form

If we extend this form table back further, the Galaxy are on a very poor run. Since mid-June, they are 2-5-2 (2-6-2 if you count the Open Cup loss to the Sacramento Republic).

What’s new for the LA Galaxy in 2022?

This is the first meeting between these teams in 2022. A good jumping off point to look at their offseason is our 2022 LA Galaxy preview my colleague David wrote. Here are the moves since that article:

IN: They’ve made a few moves, trading for fullback Chase Gaspar (Minnesota United) in addition to competing a transfer for midfielder Gastón Brugman from Parma (Italy). In lesser moves they added MLS veteran Eriq Zavaleta and promoted forward Preston Judd from Los Dos (who actually had signed with SKC II prior to being drafted by the Galaxy).

OUT: There is a rumor that midfielder Rayan Raveloson is leaving to Auxerre (France). That move would then apparently clear the way for a move to sign Riqui Puig (who I always used to sign in FIFA) from Barcelona.

All the other moves were made prior to the season and covered in our preview.

Injuries/Availability*

Sporting KC

OUT - Alan Pulido (knee surgery), Gadi Kinda (SEI - knee surgery), Ozzie Cisneros (hamstring), Kortne Ford (suspension), Tim Melia (hamstring), Cam Duke (red card)

QUESTIONABLE - Khiry Shelton (calf), Logan Ndenbe (hamstring)

*This will be updated based on the official injury report.

LA Galaxy

OUT - Jorge Villafaña (left knee), Daniel Aguirre (lower body), Victor Vazquez (lower body)

QUESTIONABLE - None

Discipline Watch for Sporting KC

Suspended Next Yellow Card: Kortne Ford

Stats

Sporting KC

Goals: Johnny Russell (6), Daniel Salloi (4), Remi Walter (3), Roger Espinoza (2), Marinos Tzionis, Felipe Hernandez, Graham Zusi (1)

Assists: Felipe Hernandez, Cam Duke (3), Daniel Salloi, Ben Sweat, Uri Rosell, Roger Espinoza, Remi Walter, Khiry Shelton, Kayden Pierre (1)

LA Galaxy

Goals: Dejan Joveljic (9), Javier ‘Chicharito’ Hernandez (7), Rayan Raveloson (3), Efrain Alvarez, Douglas Costa, Marky Delgado (2), four with one (1)

Assists: Raheem Edwards (6), Julian Araujo, Raveloson (4), Alvarez, Samuel Grandsir, Victor Vazquez (3), Daniel Aguirre, Joveljic, Sacha Kljestan (2), four with one (1)

Starting XI Predictions

This will get it’s own story. Look for it closer to game day. (Update: Get that here!)

Predictions

Honestly, the Galaxy are an under performing team. They miss on so many of their international signings and inexplicably fail to capitalize on a vibrant youth soccer market in Los Angeles (imagine if LAFC start to hit on this soon).

Plus, Kansas City really look like they’ve been building towards something. Silly red cards and mistakes have undone promising starts in their last two league games (losses to LAFC and Austin). If they could avoid shooting themselves in the foot, there is no reason they cannot beat the Galaxy.

However, I simply cannot pick them to win when they’ve only managed to do that five times in their 24 league games. I’d call predicting a draw pretty dang optimistic since Sporting haven’t scored a goal in over 400 minutes. 0-0 would probably be a safer bet.

1-1 Draw

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