Sporting KC adds players in draft

Sporting Kansas City recently has added three players in the 2019 MLS SuperDraft.

The club this week selected 23-year-old center back Franky Martinez with the No. 69 overall pick in the third round of the 2019 MLS SuperDraft, according to an announcement.

Last week, Sporting KC selected Kamar Marriott and Camden Riley, 22-year-old midfielders, in the 2019 MLS SuperDraft.

Martinez is from the University of Massachusetts Lowell. Sporting passed on its fourth-round pick as the third and fourth rounds were conducted earlier this week.

Martinez, Marriott and Riley will now join Sporting KC for the start of the 2019 preseason, presented by Children’s Mercy.

Marriott, the No. 21 overall pick in Friday’s first round, propelled Florida Gulf Coast to two NCAA Tournament appearances, three regular season titles and two conference tournament championships in the Atlantic Sun Conference from 2015 to 2018.

Riley, selected at No. 45 overall in Friday’s second round, led Pacific to three NCAA Tournament appearances and recorded 19 goals and 10 assists from 2015 to 2018 as the program’s all-time leading scorer.

Martinez played career 40 matches at UMass Lowell from 2016 to 2018. In three seasons, he helped the River Hawks to a 33-14-5 overall record and a 14-6-1 mark in the America East Conference. Martinez attended Iona Collage as a freshman in 2014, where he was an All-Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Rookie Team honoree with one goal in 18 appearances.

Sporting KC will train in Scottsdale, Arizona, from Jan. 14 to 31 and Feb. 6 to 19 before playing host to Deportivo Toluca FC in the Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League Round of 16 on Feb. 21 at Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas City, Kansas.

Vermes named MLS Sporting Executive of Year

Peter Vermes

Peter Vermes, Sporting Kansas City manager and technical director, was named the MLS Sporting Executive of the Year on Thursday at Major League Soccer’s 2018 Executive Awards Ceremony in Chicago.

Held at Theater on the Lake in conjunction with Friday’s 2019 MLS SuperDraft presented by adidas, the 2018 MLS Executive Awards Ceremony recognized individuals and clubs for their outstanding contributions off the field.

Vermes becomes the inaugural MLS Sporting Executive of the Year recipient, earning the award for his exemplary leadership, dedication and strategic vision in guiding Sporting KC to success.

In his 10th season as manager and 13th season as technical director, Vermes propelled Sporting to a first-place finish in the Western Conference and oversaw one of the best regular seasons in club history. Sporting set team records in goals, assists, goal differential and shots while amassing 18 wins and 62 points, both of which are second-most for the club all-time. Vermes was one of three finalists for 2018 MLS Coach of the Year.

As the league’s longest tenured manager, Vermes leads all active MLS coaches with eight straight playoff appearances and ranks fifth in MLS history with 133 regular-season coaching wins.

He thrived as an in-game manager throughout 2018 – Sporting led MLS with 12 goals from substitutes – while facilitating the breakthroughs of Sporting KC Academy products Gianluca Busio, Jaylin Lindsey, Wan Kuzain Wan Kamal and Daniel Salloi, who led the team with 16 goals in all competitions.

The 2018 season saw Vermes continue his oversight of all soccer operations at Sporting, including roster management, scouting and the development of the Sporting KC Academy and the Swope Park Rangers.

Sporting received 2018 MLS Academy of the Year accolades for exemplary player development, while the Rangers rode the performances of several young players Sporting KC Academy products to a third straight appearance in the USL Cup Playoffs.

Vermes also played a lead role in the opening of the $75 million Pinnacle National Development Center in Kansas City, Kansas.

Inaugurated in February, Pinnacle – the new, state-of-the-art training home of Sporting – is a first-of-its-kind collaboration that unites a professional sports team, a national sports federation (U.S. Soccer) and a sports medicine provider (Children’s Mercy).

Vermes, who became Sporting KC’s technical director in 2006 and manager in 2009, has won four major championships at the helm: the 2013 MLS Cup and Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup titles in 2012, 2015 and 2017.

Under his leadership, Sporting has become the only American club in MLS to win four major trophies since 2012. He is also one of two MLS coaches to spend 10 consecutive seasons with the same club, and his 10-year head coaching tenure with Sporting is the second-longest all-time among Kansas City’s major professional sports franchises behind Hank Stram of the Kansas City Chiefs (1963-1974).

Sporting garnered numerous honors at Thursday’s Executive Awards Ceremony, including MLS Academy of the Year and Athletic Training Staff of the Year.

Justin Compton, Sporting KC vice president of Corporate Sponsorships, was named the Corporate Sponsorships Executive of the Year, while members of Sporting’s ticket sales staff collectively reeled in six awards.

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Single-game tickets on sale for Sporting KC

Single-game tickets to Sporting Kansas City’s first eight MLS home matches of 2019 are now on sale via SeatGeek.com.

The season begins with Fan Appreciation Day against the Philadelphia Union on March 10 and ends with a marquee matchup versus Zlatan Ibrahimovic and the LA Galaxy on May 29.

Limited quantities of full-season ticket packages remain available.

Four home dates will also feature Family Four Packs consisting of four match tickets, four hot dogs, four soft drink products and four bags of chips – including a game against the Montreal Impact on March 30.

Sporting KC unveiled the club’s promotional schedule for the 2019 MLS regular season on Thursday, offering up a variety of exciting theme nights at Children’s Mercy Park. The 2019 calendar is headlined by the return of several popular promotions as Sporting continues its quest for championships on the field.

Fan Appreciation Day will offer a welcome to supporters for the team’s home opener on March 10, while Kansas City Night (April 27) and Retro Night (May 5) will celebrate local pride and pay homage to the club’s rich and vibrant history.

Soccer for All (May 29) will highlight Sporting’s commitment to inclusivity, the third annual Sporting Salutes (Aug. 10) will honor the service and sacrifice of military members and their families, and Kick Childhood Cancer Night (Sept. 21) will see players and fans alike take a unified stand against cancer.

In addition, Sporting will support the MLS WORKS Greener Goals initiative during Sporting Sustainability (April 14) and host a Fourth of July celebration on July 3 in a match against LAFC with a post-match fireworks show.

Sporting KC Promotional Calendar includes:

• Sunday, March 10 vs. Philadelphia Union (2 p.m. CT)
Fan Appreciation Day

• Sunday, March 30 vs. Montreal Impact (2 p.m. CT)
Family Four Pack presented by Coca-Cola

• Sunday, April 14 vs. New York Red Bulls (6 p.m. CT)
Sporting Sustainability (adidas Parley Night)

• Saturday, April 27 vs. New England Revolution (7:30 p.m. CT)
Kansas City Night

• Sunday, May 5 vs. Atlanta United FC (8 p.m. CT)
Retro Night

• Saturday, May 18 vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC (7:30 p.m. CT)

• Sunday, May 26 vs. Seattle Sounders FC (5 p.m. CT)

• Wednesday, May 29 vs. LA Galaxy (7:30 p.m. CT)
Soccer for All

• Wednesday, July 3 vs. LAFC (7:30 p.m. CT) – tickets on sale in May
Post-match Fireworks Show

• Saturday, Aug. 10 vs. Real Salt Lake (7:30 p.m. CT) – tickets on sale in May
Sporting Salutes

• Saturday, Sept. 21 vs. Colorado Rapids (7:30 p.m. CT) – tickets on sale in May
Kick Childhood Cancer


Single-game tickets for Sporting KC’s final nine regular season home games will go on sale to the public in May. Visit https://www.sportingkc.com/schedule/ to view the club’s full, 34-game regular season schedule.