Today, Sporting Kansas City will play the last two games of its first stage of training in Phoenix: One game against the Houston Dynamo at 11 a.m. and another against the U.S. men’s U-18 team at 12 p.m. Both games are at the Reach 11 complex. Expect some split-squad action.
The team returns to Kansas City tomorrow night for a few days in Kansas City before returning to Phoenix for the much-more intense second stage of training on Feb. 21. Assistant coach Kerry Zavagnin said over the weekend that the team they take with them the second time around.
Which makes this a great time to examine KC’s roster as of right now. (As the roster develops and morphs, we’ll break down the depth chart and lay-out the roster as best we can.)
Players Under Contract: 19Goalkeepers
Jon Kempin (HG)
Jimmy Nielsen (INT)Defenders
Korede Aiyegbusi (INT)
Craig Rocastle (INT)
Omar Bravo (DP/INT)
Teal Bunbury (GA)
Ryan Smith (INT)
Michael Mravec (INT)
Calum Butcher (INT)
Omar Colley (INT)
Julio Cesar Santos Correa (INT)
Daneil Cyrus (INT)
Mitja Morec (INT)*Midfielders
Sheldon Bateau (INT)
Milos Stojcev (INT)Forwards/Wingers
Adda Djeziri (INT)
HG: Home Grown, INT: International Player, GA: Generation adidas, DP: Designated Player*Morec was involved during the mid-week scrimmage but not in Saturday’s game against Colorado. I had heard a rumor that a trialist had been let go. It’s possible that it’s the Slovenia who last played in Greece that is out. Not sure though.
Today's lineups should/could/will be fairly instructive.
The team has 35 players in camp right now and there are still quite a few (Butcher, Colley, Correa, Cyrus, Morec [maybe], Bateau, Stojcev and Djeziri) battling for the five remaining international slots.
I expect the team will break into two squads. The first could be a glimpse of the team’s best 18 taking on Houston. The second could be a draftee/trialist team taking on the U-18s. I would think trialists like Correa, Colley, Bateau, Djeziri and Stojcev to be with the first team. Goalkeeper Jon Kempin is training with the U-18s, and I'm not sure which team he'll wind up playing for this morning.