Austin FC seek another road win vs. lowly Sporting KC

League: MLS

Posted on: 29 Jun, 2024 at 01:20 AM

Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Austin FC hit the road to play Sporting Kansas City in an important Western Conference match for both teams Saturday in Kansas City, Kan.

Austin hopes to keep its position in the playoff push, while Sporting KC is looking for anything positive.

Austin (7-7-6, 27 points) is in a three-way tie for sixth place, two points out of fifth place but just two points above the red line. A road win would be valuable. Austin is averaging just 0.5 goals per match on the road. Their five road goals are the fewest in MLS.

The club earned a 1-0 win on the road last weekend at Minnesota United to snap a five-match winless streak (0-3-2). Diego Rubio scored in the first half as Austin earned its sixth shutout of the season.

"I thought the guys started really well," Austin head coach Josh Wolff said following the match. "The guys had a willingness to go out and compete for each other and with each other. There was a real onus that we had about us at the start of the game. We deserved the goal and we took the goal."

Sporting KC (3-12-5, 14 points) have lost three straight matches and are 1-10-0 in their last 11 league matches. They had a lifeless effort in a 4-0 road loss at Columbus last Saturday. They gave up a hat trick to Cucho Hernandez and allowed four goals for the third straight match.

"That second goal didn't help right before halftime," SKC coach Peter Vermes said. "After that, I think we just got incredibly tired."

Sporting KC have now trailed in each of their past 13 matches.

If SKC are looking at their long-range goals for the rest of the season, maybe they can count on, well, long-range goals. They lead MLS with 10 goals from outside the box, two more than any other team. The club has taken 48 percent of its shot attempts from outside the box, the highest percentage in MLS.

--Field Level Media