USOC: Injuries leave Sporting's starting lineup in question
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Two days before the US Open Cup final, Sporting Kansas City are still trying to sort out who’ll be ready to play – and for how long.
“I have a lot to contemplate on where guys are after I talk to the trainers today,” manager Peter Vermes said after Monday’s training session. “I keep thinking about who it would be strategically – and I don’t mean how we’re going to play [Seattle], but I don’t want to waste subs. You never know how the game could go. It could go to overtime and everything else, being that it’s a final, and I have to look ahead towards that.”
The good news for Sporting is that midfielder Roger Espinoza is back from Olympic duty and two other key contributors are hopeful of returning from injury. The bad news is that there still could be several holes at key spots.
Central defender Aurélien Collin would be ineligible (due to yellow-card accumulation) even if he weren’t recuperating from facial fractures suffered in the MLS All-Star Game. Additionally, wingers Bobby Convey and Jacob Peterson were both on the “doubtful” list, Vermes said. Peterson has a sprained right shoulder and Convey is suffering from a hamstring injury that took him out of Saturday’s 1-0 win at New England after just seven minutes.
“It’s not a pull," Vermes said. "It’s more of a tweak and a cramp, so hopefully he’s getting a little better. We’ll see.”
Peterson has been training in a shoulder brace, but Vermes said he’s unsure whether he could see even limited duty in Wednesday night’s home final against the Sounders (9 pm ET, GolTV).
“It’s really to see if he can do the normal movements that we need to do and he needs to do,” Vermes said.
The news was better for right back Chance Myers (groin strain) and forward C.J. Sapong (right adductor strain), both of whom have had to sit out Sporting’s recent matches.
“He’s looking pretty good,” Vermes said of Myers. “[Sapong] and Chance are really in the same boat.”
Steve Brisendine covers Sporting Kansas City for MLSsoccer.com.