Sporting KC Faces FC Dallas on Saturday
Sporting Kansas City will return to the road for the third time in the first four weeks of the 2023 MLS season as the team travels to Texas to take on FC Dallas at 7:30 p.m. CT on Saturday at Toyota Stadium.
The Western Conference clash will kick off at 7:39 p.m. CT and will stream free on MLS Season Pass on Apple TV in both English and Spanish with pre-match programming starting at 7:10 p.m. CT. Saturday's showdown will be shown at each of the club's pub partners in the Sporting Pub Network and radio coverage will also air locally in English on ESPN 94.5 FM and 1510 AM, as well as in Spanish on La Grande 1340 AM with streams available in the Sporting KC app.
A pair of MLS originals will write the next chapter in their 28-year history on Saturday when Sporting Kansas City (0-1-2, 2 points) visits FC Dallas (1-1-1, 4 points). The familiar foes faced off three times in 2022, splitting the series with a 2-2 regular season draw in April on Daniel Salloi's second-half equalizer followed by a 4-2 comeback victory for Sporting in the U.S. Open Cup in May before a 2-1 win for FC Dallas on Decision Day in October.
Salloi, a 2021 MLS All-Star and MVP finalist, has scored three goals in his last three matches at Toyota Stadium and his six career regular season goals against FC Dallas are not only his most against any opponent, but also the most any KC player has scored against Dallas in the all-time series. Salloi's next regular season goal will move him into the top five scorers for Sporting KC in club history.
Sporting has recorded three regular season road wins at Dallas since 2018, the most of any club, however will be up against an FC Dallas side that is unbeaten in their last 24 March home games in the regular season with an 18-0-6 record in MLS matches during the month of March since 2012.
FC Dallas is led by a formidable front three with the Designated Player trio of Alan Velasco, Jesus Ferreira and Paul Arriola. Velasco represented Argentina at the most recent FIFA U-17 World Cup while Ferreira and Arriola were both MLS All-Stars in 2022. The 22-year-old Ferreira is the reigning MLS Young Player of the Year and was named to the MLS Best XI in 2022 before starting for the U.S. Men's National Team in the Round of 16 at the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Coming off a 1-1 draw in Vancouver last weekend, the FC Dallas attack is further bolstered by the arrival of Jesus Jimenez this week. Acquired in a trade with Toronto to replace Franco Jara, Jimenez tallied nine goals and three assists in Major League Soccer last season.
SKC is also coming off a draw last Saturday, one in which Sporting attempted the most shots (30) in a regular season match in club history without scoring as the club's home opener ended in a stalemate with the LA Galaxy at Children's Mercy Park. SKC leads MLS in both shots and shots on goal in 2023, however is one of three teams in the league without a goal through the first three weeks of the season. Moreover, the team's 26 shots on goal are the most in club history through three matches and the most in MLS at this stage of the season since Chivas USA in 2007.
Sporting will look for an offensive breakthrough against a Dallas defense that allowed the fewest goals (37) in the Western Conference a year ago, however has conceded in each of their past nine MLS matches - the longest streak without a shutout in MLS currently.
Speaking of streaks, Sporting KC is winless in nine consecutive road matches across all competitions but the team's defense boasts a 264-minute shutout streak that ranks second longest in MLS entering Matchday 4. John Pulskamp has recorded back-to-back clean sheets and, at age 21, has become the sixth-youngest goalkeeper in MLS history to record six career shutouts in the regular season.
Bolstering the backline in front of Pulskamp is Sporting Kansas City right back Graham Zusi, who is one shy of his 300th regular season start for the club. The only player in MLS history to play 15 seasons with the same club, Zusi is set to become the sixth player in MLS all-time to log 300 regular season starts with a single club.
MOST STARTS WITH SINGLE CLUB
MLS REGULAR SEASON ALL-TIME
1. Nick Rimando, 369 starts for RSL
2. Kyle Beckerman, 337 starts for RSL
3. Diego Chara, 336 starts for POR
4. Chris Wondolowski, 313 starts for SJ
5. Andrew Farrell, 301 starts for NE
6. Graham Zusi, 299 starts for SKC
Sporting Kansas City remains shorthanded with four players -- Kortne Ford (Achilles), Logan Ndenbe (hamstring), Gadi Kinda (knee) and Johnny Russell (hamstring) -- out due to injury on Saturday. Tim Leibold (hamstring) and Alan Pulido (knee) are listed as questionable on the team's player availability report.
Sporting Kansas City at FC Dallas
2023 MLS Regular Season | Match 4
Saturday, March 18 | 7:30 p.m. CT (7:39 kickoff)
Toyota Stadium | Frisco, Texas
Apple TV | Free on MLS Season Pass
English Radio | ESPN 94.5 FM/1510 AM
Spanish Radio | La Grande 1340 AM
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