Philadelphia Union head to K.C. looking for a third consecutive league win

(Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)
(Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images) /

The Philadelphia Union look to make it three consecutive league wins, as they travel to Sporting K.C. on Thursday evening.

The ins and outs

Sporting Kansas City (8-7-4) vs. Philadelphia Union (6-4-7)

When: Thursday 8:30 p.m. ET – Children’s Mercy Park (Kansas City, KS)

Where to watch: The Comcast Network (TCN)

Streaming: MLS Live

PRO Referees: Ricardo Salazar, Ian Anderson (AR1), Kathryn Nesbitt (AR2), Nima Saghafi (AR4).

Coaches: Peter Vermes (Sporting KC)  – Jim Curtin (Philadelphia Union).

More from Philadelphia Union

Union looking to build off of Sunday’s beatdown
The Philadelphia Union have a busy month of July, which started with a 3-0 home victory over the New England Revolution last Sunday. C.J. Sapong, Ilsinho, and Roland Alberg all got on the scoresheet as the Union ran away with three points. Jim Curtin’s side easily could’ve won by a larger margin, as Haris Medunjanin and Fafa Picault saw efforts go astray. This now takes the Union into a winnable road match in Kansas City on Thursday, against a host side without the likes of Matt Besler, Dom Dwyer, and Graham Zusi who are all on international duty. A victory at Children’s Mercy Park on Thursday would give the Union a third straight league victory, which could see them inch up the Eastern Conference standings.

Sporting K.C. are unbeaten in their last seven matches across all competitions and have not tasted defeat since May 27th. The hosts drew 1-1 against the Portland Timbers last Saturday and will find things tough with three key starters out of the line-up. Leading scorer Gerso Fernandes is also likely to miss Thursday’s match after suffering a shoulder dislocation in the draw. This is the second of a current three-match homestand for Sporting KC, who conclude the homestand next week against F.C. Dallas in U.S. Open Cup play.

Possible Lineups/ Injury Report:
The Union will be missing both goalkeeper Andre Blake and midfielder Alejandro Bedoya who are on international duty for the Gold Cup. Midfielder Warren Creavalle (hamstring), defender Jack Elliott (tibia), and winger Fabian Herbers (abdomen) are all questionable.

Keys to the Game:

Disrupt KC’s home-field advantage early.

With three key starters missing for Kansas City, this is a good chance for the Union to claim three points. To do so, they need to frustrate the hosts early and show the same intensity that they did at home on Sunday. The Union used Picault’s speed to create chances down the wings, while never really allowing the Revolution to get anything going offensively.

Ike Opara


Seth Sinovic

should be starting for Kansas City defensively, but offensively there isn’t a lot of goals if Fernandes is also missing. Look for the Union to get after Vermes’ side from the opening whistle.

Next: Chris Pontius added to Gold Cup roster

  • Player to Watch – Haris Medunjanin. Haris Medunjanin is an early candidate for Union player of the year. He has two goals and four assists in 17 MLS appearances so far. With Alejandro Bedoya missing for at least a couple matches, the Bosnian international will be relied on to lead the team in midfield. The 32-year-old has been a solid presence in defending, while a pure leader on and off the field. If he continues to be in the starting line-up for Philadelphia, then the Union always have a shot at three points.