Sporting Kansas City-Galaxy Preview
There are sure to be fireworks on Sunday, as both LA Galaxy and Sporting Kansas City aim to celebrate Independence Day with a victory in a big Western Conference clash.
Sporting and the Galaxy are the nearest competitors to Seattle Sounders at the top of the Western Conference, with the upcoming contest marking an encounter between third and second place.
Both teams come into the meeting on the back of two successive wins, though Sporting had to do it the hard way against Los Angeles FC last time out.
Dealing with several injures, Vermer's team came from behind to win 2-1 courtesy of Daniel Salloi's late effort.
Asked how his side made it through a tough run of three games in one week, Vermer said: "Everybody understands their role and responsibility when they go in, and there's an accountability factor as well.
"It's hard to go into a game and not realize that you have a role to play to try and help capture the result, keep the result and the guys feel that. That's the sign of a team that want to compete - that's a great thing.
"We've also got to get healthy across the board. I'm amazed at times at how guys get injured, it's a tough game, there's a lot of demand. Hopefully we'll get healthy."
After his winner against LAFC, Salloi is on seven goals for the season, three shy of MLS' leading scorer Javier Hernandez, who missed out on the latest Mexico squad despite his brilliant form.
"We will keep him here all day if they don't have a use for him," Galaxy coach Greg Vanney said. "We're happy to have him."
LA Galaxy - Javier Hernandez
Only four players have scored more through their first 10 appearances in an MLS season than Hernandez: Carlos Vela (LAFC) in 2019, Chris Wondolowski (San Jose) in 2012, Landon Donovan (LA Galaxy) in 2008 and Roy Lassiter (DC United) in 1999, all with 11 goals.
Sporting Kansas City - Daniel Salloi
After scoring 14 goals in 2018, Salloi managed just one strike across the 2019 and 2020 seasons combined. However, the forward has returned to form this term, and is well in the hunt for the league's top scorer prize.
- SKC has scored an MLS-high 22 goals this season, scoring at least twice in seven matches, tied with Seattle for most in MLS.
- This is the fourth straight season Sporting has scored at least 22 goals through 12 matches after doing so just four times in its first 21 MLS seasons.
- SKC came from 1-0 down to beat LAFC on Saturday, its fifth come-from-behind win this season. Sporting has 16 points after going behind this season, more than 19 teams have in all their matches in total in 2021.
- The Galaxy earned their seventh win of the season with a 3-1 victory in San Jose on Saturday. The Galaxy now have one more win this season (seven) than they had all of last season (six).
- The Galaxy won both meetings with Sporting Kansas City in 2019, the last time the teams played. This is the Galaxy's first winning streak over Sporting since 2007-08 as they had won just three of the 19 meetings between those streaks (D8 L8).
Updated July 3, 2021