Thursday, November 30, 2023

MLS Decision Day Preview: Minnesota United FC (10-12-11) at Sporting Kansas City (11-14-8)

Sporting Kansas City has won all eight regular-season home matches against Minnesota United FC (L1 in playoffs), the longest active home winning streak by one team against another in MLS. The run equals Sporting Kansas City’s longest regular-season home winning streak against any opponent (San Jose Earthquakes from 2004-2014).

Sporting Kansas City sits two points out of the playoffs entering the final matchday of the season despite collecting just three points in its first 10 matches this year (W0 D3 L7). Sporting Kansas City could become the first team in MLS history to reach the playoffs despite collecting fewer points than five points from its first 10 games.

Saturday’s match at Sporting Kansas City will be Minnesota United FC’s 224th regular-season game but the first since Adrian heath’s departure. Sigi Schmid with the Seattle Sounders FC (250 games) was the only original coach of an MLS team to last longer than Heath (223), excluding the Houston Dynamo FC, who relocated from San Jose.

Alan Pulido scored his 14th goal of the season in Sporting Kansas City’s win on October 7, tied for seventh-most in MLS this season despite no scoring his first goal until May. Only Luciano Acosta (15) has more goals than Pulido (14) since the beginning of May.

Teemu Pukki recorded the 17th four-goal regular-season match in MLS history on October 7, scoring all four of his goals in a span of 31 minutes. That equals the the fastest any player has scored four times in a match in MLS history, matching Patrick Mullins for D. C. United against the San Jose Earthquakes in September 2017.

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