How will the wet conditions affect the game? Both FCD and SKC love to press high and disrupt defenders who attempt to play the ball out of the back. This is a game that could be decided on a mistake or a skipping ball that is misjudged.
Sporting KC had 65% of the possession against Colorado, yet had fewer shots on goal. FCD will be happy to concede possession and pounce quickly on turnovers. With the sloppy conditions, will Sporting attempt to control the ball or try something different?
Both Walker Zimmerman and Zach Loyd are available to start. Zimmerman played well over 90 minutes in Portland. Is this a situation where Oscar Pareja switches back to Zach? Loyd is also better with the ball at his feet, a skill which will be in high demand due to the field condition.
Is Mauro Diaz ready yet? Unlikely. He wasn't in the 18 at Portland. Also, caution is the best policy with a wet field where he could easily lose his footing. Expect the 4-4-2 again with Tesho Akindele and Maximiliano Urruti up top.
Was Michael Barrios injured at the end of the Portland game, or was he just killing time? If he is not ready to play, we might see Atiba Harris in an attacking role. I know our readers are clamoring for a Timo Pitter appearance, and we might be in luck today!
With Carlos Gruezo suspended on yellow card accumulation, Kellyn Acosta will partner Victor Ulloa in central midfield. Jesse Gonzalez is with the Mexico U-23s, so Chris Seitz will continue to start.
For Sporting, Benny Feilhaber and Dom Dwyer came on at halftime against the Rapids as SKC was chasing the game. They will start in this one.
Justin Mapp and Soni Mustivar are out, and Brad Davis and Paulo Nagamura are questionable. That means we are likely to see Graham Zusi and Connor Hallisey on the wings, with Lawrence Olum and Roger Espinoza backing up Feilhaber in the middle.
Peter Vermes said that Matt Besler, who has been out with a concussion, was going to be subbed on in Commerce City but that the game dictated other substitutions. Besler, Nuno Andre Coelho, and Ike Opara could all start at center back.
Kevin Ellis and Chance Myers will be out. That means Saad Abdul-Salaam and Amadou Dia should play fullback.
How to watch:
Kickoff: Saturday, April 17th, 6:00pm central
Venue: Toyota Stadium, Frisco, TX
Weather Forecast: Scattered thunderstoms tapering off around kickoff time. There should be a window where the game can occur. Strong 19 MPH winds. Wet field.
Projected Starting Lineups:
Sporting Kansas City