The core of Sporting Kansas City’s 2016 roster began to take shape Wednesday.
The club announced that five players will be out of contract as of Dec. 31 — midfielders Soni Mustivar, Paulo Nagamura and Mikey Lopez, homegrown goalkeeper Jon Kempin and defender Seth Sinovic. Sporting KC plans to extend offers to all five players.
Sporting KC has picked up option years for Saad Abdul-Salaam, Amadou Dia, Kevin Ellis, Benny Feilhaber, Connor Hallisey, Jimmy Medranda, Tim Melia, Chance Myers, Krisztian Nemeth, Ike Opara, Erik Palmer-Brown and Jordi Quintilla — giving the club a total of 20 players who are under contract for 2016.
Matt Besler, Graham Zusi, Dom Dwyer, Roger Espinoza, Bernardo Anor, Marcel de Jong, Amobi Okugo and Jacob Peterson are already signed.
Sporting KC declined the option on defender Jalil Anibaba, who will be eligible for the MLS Re-Entry Draft next month.
Among the out-of-contract players, Mustivar made the most appearances for Sporting KC last season. He started 20 matches and solidified a defensive midfielder position that featured a rotating turnstile before his arrival. Paulo Nagamura made 17 starts in his fourth season with the club, taking over for the injured Espinoza.
Sporting KC will report for training camp on Jan. 24 in Tucson, Ariz.