While supporters eagerly await the entire 2013 Major League Soccer schedule, MLS teased the First Kick for each of its 19 clubs Tuesday morning.
For the Union, it was released that for the first time in the clubs’ three-year history it will open the season at home on March 2 against Sporting Kansas City. A week later, the Union set out on the road to face Colorado on March 9.
The Union hosted Colorado in its home opener last year but will play the rubber match at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, but with Colorado’s all-time leading scorer Conor Casey in a Union uniform.
Here’s a breakdown of how the Union has fared against these two and what to expect going forward.
Sporting Kansas City
When: Saturday, March 2
Where: PPL Park, Chester
All-time record: 1-3-3 overall (1-2-3, MLS; 0-1 U.S. Open Cup)
Last meeting: (Oct. 24, 2012) Sporting Kansas City opened the scoring in the 40th minute with a goal from Jacob Peterson. The Union would come back after second half substitute Antoine Hoppenot goes "Gangnam Style" after this rebound goal off a penalty kick save in the 53rd, but Sporting’s C.J. Sapong sends the sellout crowd at Livestrong Sporting Park into a frenzy after his goal in the 82 nd to eke out a 2-1 victory.
Best moment: (June 23, 2012) In John Hackworth’s second match as interim head coach, forward Jack McInerney repays his new boss’ faith with a goal a minute into the pair’s first meeting of 2012 with a goal just 59 seconds into the match en route to a 4-0 victory. Hackworth in his postgame press conference said simply after the match "What can I say? It was a great night for our forwards."
When: Saturday, March 9
Where: Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, Commerce City, Colo.
All-time record: 0-2-2 overall
Last meeting: (March 18, 2012) Colorado struck twice, with goals from midfielder Jaime Castrillon and forward Tony Cascio but former Union forward Lionard Pajoy brought the game to within one in the 67th minute in what was the home opener for the Union at PPL Park. In fact in two of the last three meetings with the Rapids, the match has been ended 2-1.
Best moment: (June 4, 2011) Came during the 2011 season when former first round SuperDraft pick Danny Mwanga scored in the 66 th minute to preserve a 1-1 tie and put a bit of a damper on what was supposed to be a celebration for then Rapids forward Conor Casey who became Colorado’s all-time leading penalty kick scorer (10) after burying one in the 63rd minute.
Contact Union writer Kerith Gabriel at firstname.lastname@example.org