Sporting KC opens season at home against New York on March 8

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Sporting Kansas City will kick off the team’s highly-anticipated 20th season at 6 p.m. on Sunday, March 8, at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kan., in a nationally televised rematch against the New York Red Bulls on FOX Sports 1, Major League Soccer announced on Friday.

Single-game tickets for Sporting Kansas City’s home opener and the full 2015 Major League Soccer schedule will be released at a later date. Individuals who place deposits for season tickets or group tickets for the 2015 season will receive priority consideration for securing single-game tickets to Sporting KC home matches in 2015. For additional ticket information, call 888-4KC-GOAL.

Sporting Kansas City’s season opener will feature a match-up of the top two goal scorers from the 2014 MLS season.

Sporting KC forward Dom Dwyer set the club’s single-season scoring record with 22 goals, while New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips tied the MLS single-season mark with 27 goals during the regular season. The two Englishman were each MLS All-Stars and both signed new contracts with their respective clubs after their record-setting seasons.

The opener will also mark Sporting Kansas City’s third straight match against the Red Bulls after ending the 2014 campaign with back-to-back games against Mike Petke’s side. The clubs met in the 2014 regular season finale and again in the Eastern Conference Knockout Round of the 2014 MLS Cup Playoffs.

New York – unbeaten in five straight versus Sporting KC in the all-time series and four straight at Sporting Park – will be playing the first game since the retirement of club captain Thierry Henry, who led MLS with 19 assists in 2014 and was a four-time MLS All-Star to go along with three MLS Best XI selections.

Sporting Kansas City re-joins the Western Conference in 2015 and will open the team’s MLS campaign at home for the first time since 2010, where the team is 11-2-6 all-time in home openers. Both charter members of Major League Soccer dating back to the inaugural season in 1996, Sporting KC and New York will meet in Week 1 for the first time in the League history as part of the earliest regular season home game ever played in Kansas City.

FOX Sports — Major League Soccer’s newest broadcast partner — will carry the match on FOX Sports 1 as their first live broadcast over the course of an eight-year partnership.

MLS 2015 SCHEDULE – WEEK 1 (subject to change)

Friday, March 6
LA Galaxy vs. Chicago Fire (StubHub Center)

Saturday, March 7

D.C. United vs. Montreal Impact (RFK Stadium)
Vancouver Whitecaps FC vs. Toronto FC (BC Place)
Houston Dynamo vs. Columbus Crew SC (BBVA Compass Stadium)
Philadelphia Union vs. Colorado Rapids (PPL Park)
Portland Timbers vs. Real Salt Lake (Providence Park)
FC Dallas vs. San Jose Earthquakes (Toyota Stadium)

Sunday, March 8
Orlando City SC vs. New York City FC (Orlando Citrus Bowl)
Sporting Kansas City vs. New York Red Bulls (Sporting Park)
Seattle Sounders FC vs. New England Revolution (CenturyLink Field)

– Story from Sporting KC

Dwyer signs contract extension with Sporting KC

Dom Dwyer
Dom Dwyer

Sporting Kansas City announced on Wednesday that forward Dom Dwyer has signed a contract extension with the club.

“I am ecstatic to commit my future to Kansas City,” Dwyer said. “I want to thank the coaches and ownership for having faith in me. Also, a special thanks to the fans for all of their continued support. I am excited to get going again. Last year was a starting point for what is to come in the future, which is scoring a lot more goals, driving to win championships and enjoying myself on and off the field in a city with supporters to which I have grown to love and embrace.”

“Dom’s new contract is well-deserved. I am very happy for him and for the club to have reached this deal,” Sporting Kansas City manager Peter Vermes said. “He has performed at a very high level on a consistent basis and this contract again shows a strong commitment to keeping players of his caliber in Kansas City.”

Dwyer’s breakout season in 2014 garnered Sporting Kansas City’s Offensive Player of the Year and co-Most Valuable Player awards, as well as MLS All-Star honors. The 24-year-old Englishman set the club’s single-season record with 22 goals, second most in MLS, and his 24 career goals in the regular season now rank ninth most in team history.

Dwyer also added goals in the CONCACAF Champions League and MLS Cup Playoffs for the second straight year, giving him 50 goals scored across all competitions since the start of 2013:
MLS Regular Season: 24 goals
MLS Cup Playoffs: 2 goals
CONCACAF Champions League: 2 goals
USL PRO Regular Season: 15 goals
USL PRO Playoffs: 4 goals
U.S. Open Cup: 3 goals

Dwyer was selected in the first round of the 2012 MLS SuperDraft as a Generation adidas member out of the University of South Florida.

After making three appearances across all competition during his rookie season, Dwyer scored 15 goals in 13 regular season games while on loan with USL PRO affiliate Orlando City SC in 2013 to set the league’s single-season scoring record at the time and claim All-League honors. He returned to the Lions for the USL PRO final, scoring four goals to earn championship MVP recognition.

His record-setting 2014 campaign placed Dwyer’s name on the Sporting Kansas City and Major League Soccer all-time charts in the following categories:
Single season (2014)
• Second in goals (22), game-winning goals (6) and multi-goal games (5) in MLS for 2014
• Six game-winning goals in 2014 were most in a season in Sporting KC history
• Seven penalty kick goals in 2014 were most in a season in Sporting KC history
• 0.67 goals per game in 2014 ranks second best in a season in Sporting KC history
• 0.63 goals per 90 minutes average is highest all-time for a Sporting KC player and sixth-highest in MLS history*
• Highest goals per game average (0.48) in Sporting KC history*
• Second in penalty kick goals (7) in Sporting KC history
• Third in multi-goal games (5) in Sporting KC history
• Third in scoring percentage (17.0) in Sporting KC history*
*Among players with a minimum of 20 goals
– Story from Sporting KC

Sporting KC signs midfielder James Marcelin

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Sporting Kansas City has signed Haitian Men’s National Team midfielder James Marcelin, the club announced.

Marcelin has been added to the team’s roster for the 2015 season and will occupy an international roster spot.

“I am very excited to be back in MLS and playing for Kansas City,” Marcelin said. “I know the team well and have a lot of friends that have played there. They won the championship in 2013 and I’m looking forward to helping them win another. Sporting KC is one of the great teams in MLS and I can’t wait to get started with them.”

Marcelin made 39 appearances in Major League Soccer over two seasons split between the Portland Timbers (2011-2012) and FC Dallas (2012). He most recently was a member of the Fort Lauderdale Strikers in the North American Soccer League, making 15 appearances (including postseason) since signing in July and starting in the league final, Soccer Bowl 2014, last month.

The 28-year-old Marcelin has represented Haiti in numerous international competitions during his professional career, including Olympic (2008) and World Cup (2010, 2014) qualifying. At age 21, he was the youngest player on Haiti’s roster at the 2007 CONCACAF Gold Cup and started their opening match.

Two years later, Marcelin played the full 90 minutes in all four of Haiti’s matches at the 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup, scoring against Grenada (video) and helping Haiti reach the quarterfinals with a 2-2 draw against the United States. In 2011, Marcelin scored the opening goal in Haiti’s qualifying campaign for the 2014 FIFA World Cup and added another goal during CONCACAF’s second round of qualification.

His club career began as a teenager in his native Haiti with Roulado and Racing Club Haïtien before joining the Puerto Rico Islanders of the USL First Division for the 2008 and 2009 seasons. The Islanders finished atop the league standings to win the Commissioner’s Cup in 2008 and reached the semifinals of the 2008-09 CONCACAF Champions League with Marcelin making 16 CCL appearances while with Puerto Rico.

In 2010, Marcelin joined the Portland Timbers and played in 29 games across all competition. He scored in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup and D-2 Pro League Playoffs, earning a contract for the club’s inaugural season in MLS the following year.
– Story from Sporting KC