MLS matchday: D.C. United at Sporting Kansas City

(SKC) (SKC)
(D.C. United) (D.C. United)

Greetings from Manaus Kansas City.

Brutal heat has enveloped the region, with the temperature peaking at 100 and humidity near 50 percent this afternoon on the Kansas side of the Missouri River.

At least the D.C. United-Sporting KC match is in the evening, unlike the NWSL semifinal between FC Kansas City and the Portland Thorns on artificial turf at UMKC this afternoon. During the scheduled hydration breaks, players dipped their cleats in buckets of water.

Tonight at Sporting Park, United has an opportunity to overtake Kansas City for first place in the Eastern Conference and, for at least a few hours, move atop the Supporters’ Shield table.

Fact: SKC and DCU boast the lowest goals against averages in MLS.

Pregame reading material: My preview of United’s third attempt to claim the top position in the East.

Kickoff: 8:45 p.m. ET.

TV in D.C.: None.

Streaming video: www.dcunited.com/live, MLSsoccer.com’s free stream of the week.

Game-time weather: 93 degrees, 37 percent humidity, 0 percent chance of rain.

Referee: Alan Kelly.

Official DCU injury report: GK Andrew Dykstra (Achilles’ tendon), MF Chris Pontius (hamstring), F Conor Doyle (knee), D Jeff Parke (migraines), F Michael Seaton (quadriceps), D Chris Korb (hamstring) are out.

Suspended: F Eddie Johnson.

Yellow card warning: Davy Arnaud. (If he receives one tonight, he will miss Wednesday’s match at Los Angeles.)

DCU on the road: 4-5-1, 13 goals for, 15 against.

SKC at home: 5-1-6, 20 goals for, 10 against.

Road trip cuisine: Homemade guacamole at Maria’s in Atchison, Kan. — 45 miles northwest of Kansas City, Mo., Amelia Earhart’s birthplace, bluffs overlooking the Missouri, Victorian houses.

DCU lineup: Hamid; Franklin, Boswell, Birnbaum, Kemp; DeLeon, Kitchen, Arnaud, Rolfe; Silva, Espíndola. Subs: Willis, Opare, Attakora, Jeffrey, Estrada, Caskey, Neal.

SKC lineup: Kempin; Juliao, Collin, Besler, Sinovic; Olum, Zusi, Feilhaber; Zizzo, Dwyer, Saad. Subs: Melia, Ellis, Claros, Steuble, Dovale, Bieler, Sapong.

Your pregame, in-game and postgame thoughts are welcome in the comments section.

 

Steven Goff is The Post’s soccer writer. His beats include D.C. United, MLS and the international game, as well as local college basketball.

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Steven Goff · August 21, 2014