Ike Opara on his first goal of 2017
MONTREAL IMPACT AT SPORTING KANSAS CITY
WHEN/WHERE: 7 p.m. Saturday at Children’s Mercy Park
TV/RADIO: Fox Sports KC; WHB (810 AM)
ABOUT MONTREAL (4-4-4, 16 points): The Impact have seven players who will miss the match after international call-ups. It’s been a struggle defensively for the Impact, which concedes the most shots on goal in MLS on a per-game basis. Montreal allows 1.5 goals per match.
ABOUT SPORTING KC (7-4-4, 25 points): Captain Matt Besler and defender Graham Zusi are with the United States men’s national team and will miss the match. The Americans play Mexico on Sunday. ... With Besler away, Sporting KC will either turn to Kevin Ellis or Amer Didic to line up alongside Ike Opara in the center of the defense. Ellis is questionable with a quadriceps strain. ... Sporting KC has posted eight shutouts in 15 games. It has won six straight at home.
BOTTOM LINE: For whatever reason, the Montreal Impact have drawn out the best in Sporting KC forward Dom Dwyer. The striker has nine goals in six career appearances against the Impact. No other player has scored more against Montreal. Dwyer is set to return to the lineup after a knee injury limited his time on the field in the last three matches.
PREDICTION: Sporting KC 2, Montreal 1