ORLANDO, Fla. (April 22, 2021) - Orlando City SC (0-0-1, 1 point) embarks on its first road trip of the 2021 Major League Soccer (MLS) regular season, set to take on Sporting Kansas City (1-0-0, 3 points) on Friday, April 23 at Children’s Mercy Park. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. ET.
The match, presented by Bodyarmor, will be nationally broadcast on FS1 and Fox Deportes while being transmitted on 96.9 The Game in English and Acción 97.9FM, 810AM in Spanish.
“Quick turnaround now. We have the competition in front of us, we started after the game analyzing what we did against Atlanta [United] and how we can progress it,” Head Coach Oscar Pareja said. “Now we have just been organizing for the game against [Sporting] Kansas [City], that’s been the focus.”
Friday will mark one of just two regular-season meetings between Western Conference opponents for City this season, the next not coming until June 22 when the side hosts the San Jose Earthquakes at Exploria Stadium.
The Lions enter Friday’s contest after opening the 2021 campaign with a scoreless draw against Atlanta United FC at Exploria Stadium this past Saturday. Goalkeeper Pedro Gallese registered three saves en route to his first clean sheet of the calendar year, while forwards Alexandre Pato and Silvester van der Water made their long-awaited debuts in purple.
Sporting KC comes into the matchup looking to build off a 2-1 victory at New York Red Bulls on opening weekend. Caden Clark opened the scoring for the home side in the 48th minute only to be answered by Gadi Kinda from the spot in the 59th, with Daniel Sallói netting the eventual game-winner a minute later.
After finishing atop the Western Conference a year ago, Head Coach Peter Vermes and company return a number of attacking options from a year ago, including Kinda, Alan Pulido and Johnny Russell, who led the side with six goals apiece in 2020. Tim Melia will occupy the sticks once more for SKC, while defender Nicolas Isimat-Mirin and midfielder Remi Walter highlight the key acquisitions for the side heading into 2021.
Following Friday’s match, the Lions will return home for a two-game stint at Exploria Stadium, first set to host FC Cincinnati on Saturday, May 1 before welcoming 2015 expansion rivals New York City FC a week later.