Pulido Negotiating with Sporting KC?, KC Current/SKC II Preseasons
Plus, Pulido rumours, Peter Vermes on injuries and possibly another signing or move.
It’s getting a bit difficult to keep up with everything that’s happening, so Blue Notes is our attempt to highlight a few points about football in Kansas City. Let’s go!
Pulido is negotiating an extension?
There have been many rumors of Alan Pulido being linked with a move back to Chivas in Liga MX, something Pulido has previously addressed and a few more have surfaced on the subject over the past week.
One notable story, however, was that Pulido had been offered a contract extension by Sporting Kansas City. Via Google Translate: “Sporting KC are already in extension talks with the Mexican striker and they are on the right track.” “Kery” seems reputable having worked for many big media outlets over the years.
Alan has missed over half of all the games he could have appeared in with SKC. With the emergence of Willy Agada last season, it will be interesting to see if Pulido sticks around and what that would cost. It would be a shame to lose him for nothing. He can already sign a preliminary contract with the MLS this summer.
Speaking of Pulido transfer rumours
The same report is used to say that the Chivas board now want to bring Pulido back to Mexico as Jose Juan Macias is out for most of next year (remember when he was rumored to be coming to KC last year) . They say an attractive offer could lure Pulido away from SKC. Considering Sporting reportedly paid $9.5m to bring Pulido from Chivas ahead of the 2020 season, but he may sign a pre-contract this summer, it’s hard to say how “attractive” the offer would be would have to.
Although a source said they want to buy Pulido; Another says they will survive the spring season.
In case you missed last week’s press release, Peter Vermes spoke about the signing of Robert Castellanos (though not by name as it hadn’t been announced), but then he said: “We’re still working on a few other things.” Presumably means this that another signing takes place (or maybe a trade with the glut of left-backs on the squad).
He continues, “We’re also looking at some other situations,” after saying there aren’t enough CBs on the list and one (Castellanos) will be announced soon.
Vermes further talked about:
- Yeison Mejia and his qualities and how he has time in the second team to develop without so much pressure.
- Logan Ndenbe is out with a hamstring injury
- Khiry’s best spot is outside and he’s recovered from his pre-season ‘knock’
KC Current pre-season schedule
The Kansas City Current are about to play their first of four preseason games. It appears that only the first will be open to the public, but there’s no indication if the game will be streamed in any way (I wouldn’t hold my breath).
- February 23 – Orlando Pride – 5:30pm CT (Exploria Stadium – Orlando, Florida)
- Feb. 27 – Chicago Red Stars – 10:00am CT (Bradenton, Florida)
- March 8 – Houston Dash – 12:00 PM CT (San Diego, California)
- March 11 – San Diego Wave FC – 2:00 p.m. CT (San Diego, California)
The KC Current starts its regular season on March 25 away against North Carolina Courage (full schedule).
SKC II pre-season schedule
Already underway, Sporting KC II has kicked off its pre-season (sorry I was on vacation when this came out). Last weekend they lost their first game against Union Omaha (USL League One) 2:3. They have four more announced games.
- Saturday March 4 – 1pm CT – Tulsa FC (USL Championship) [Tulsa, OK]
- Monday, March 6 – 3pm CT – Richmond College [Dallas, TX]
- Thursday, March 9th – 9am CT – North Texas SC (MLS NEXT Pro) [Dallas, TX]
- Saturday, March 18 – 2 p.m. CT – Kansas City Roos Men’s Soccer (Summit League) [Kansas City, MO]
As part of this schedule release, the team announced their preseason roster, which does not include Esai Easley or Curtez Kellman, who were in negotiations at the end of the season. All 16 players on the list are listed, plus six trialists and six SKC Academy members.
- Koby Carr
- Sebastian Cruz
- Tarek Mahmud Eldaly
- Daniel Espeleta
- Roman Knox
- Luca Rosa
Members of the SKC Academy
- Kai Auvray
- Jacob Bartlett
- Nati Clarke
- Matthew Fisher
- Carlito Saylon
- Cielo Tschantret
New MLS playoff format
Finally, just days before the start of the season, the league announced its 2023 playoff format. The quick and fast version:
- 18 teams make it into (ugh!)
- The 8th and 9th seeds of each conference will play a “wild card” game to advance to the first round (8th seed).
- In round one, the remaining 16 teams play best-of-three series
- Round 1: No overtime and no draw. In case of a tie after 90 minutes directly to PKs. The first team to win two games advances
- Single elimination with overtime and PKs thereafter (if required) for the remainder of the playoffs
I’ve been known to hate this. I guess the wild card is a little better than it was when I thought the first seed had an awfully long bye, but the playoffs didn’t go broke and that just devalues the regular season.
The US Open Cup Twitter admin and I are on the same page.
Kaw Valley not in League Two?
USL League Two released their realigned divisions and notably absent was Kaw Valley FC, who normally played in the Heartland Division. There are no posts on social media or the website, but maybe the team is taking the year off? Some tweets seem to imply they have broken up, but there’s nothing official.
- Unsurprisingly, Nemanja Radoja has been ranked by MLSsoccer.com’s Tom Bogert as the most important off-season signing for Sporting KC.
- Speaking of the league website, Matt Doyle has updated his depth chart for every team including SKC and he has fixed many depth errors he had in previous versions. He’s flipped Thommy and Walter on which side I think they’ll be on, but overall it’s looking pretty good.
- Inter Miami have banned The Athletic from media day. Not good looks.
- This is some kind of wild graphic.
[MEME] Local inspiration for MLS 2023 kits by MLS