Match Preview | St. Louis CITY SC Kicks Off Audi 2023 MLS Cup Playoffs with Round One Matchup Against Sporting KC 


Following a successful regular-season, St. Louis CITY SC will face Sporting KC in the first match of their MLS Cup Playoffs Round One Best-of-3 Series on Sunday, October 29 at CITYPARK. The match kicks off at 9:00 p.m. CT. Fans can watch the match on MLS Season Pass and FS1/Fox Sports Deportes and listen the call by our radio partners on KYKY Y98.1 FM (English) and KXOK 102.9 FM (Spanish).

St. Louis CITY SC is the eighth expansion team to reach the playoffs in its inaugural season and the first since Nashville SC and Inter Miami in 2020. Nashville, who advanced twice in 2020, and the Chicago Fire, who won MLS Cup in 1998, are the only expansion teams to progress past their first round in the playoffs, per Opta.

St. Louis finished the regular season at the summit of the MLS Western Conference, becoming the first expansion team in MLS history to win its conference in its debut season. CITY SC finished with a 17-12-5 record, 56 points, 62 goals scored and a plus-17 goal differential. St. Louis posted a 11-4-2 home mark and a 6-8-3 away record. 

CITY SC became the first expansion club in MLS history (excluding the shootout era) to win 17 regular season games in their inaugural season and joins LAFC (2018), Atlanta (2019) and Chicago Fire (1998) as one of four expansion teams to score at least 60 goals in their first year.

St. Louis CITY SC’s 11 home wins of the season ties Atlanta United for the most by an expansion team in their inaugural season (excluding the shootout era). Nine of those 11 wins came in matches in which St. Louis scored three or more goals. CITY SC scored 41 goals at home in the regular season, which is tied for second with Columbus Crew and one behind Atlanta United FC in that category.

As a result of the successful regular season, St. Louis CITY SC tallied four finalists for the 2023 MLS Year-End awards. The four finalists include Head Coach Bradley Carnell (Sigi Schmid MLS Coach of the Year), captain and goalkeeper Roman Bürki (Allstate MLS Goalkeeper of the Year), vice-captain and defender Tim Parker (MLS Defender of the Year) and midfielder Eduard Löwen (MLS Newcomer of the Year).

St. Louis CITY SC and Sporting Kansas City met three times during the 2023 regular-season, with the home side of each match winning all three meetings. CITY SC won both meetings at CITYPARK by scoring four goals in each match, becoming the first team to score four goals on multiple occasions in a single season against Kansas City since FC Dallas in 1999, per Opta. 

In the most recent match at CITYPARK, St. Louis found the net four times in the last 17 minutes courtesy of goals from Sam Adeniran, Jared Stroud and João Klauss (2). Löwen recorded a hattrick of assists in the match to take his tally to 14 on the season. St. Louis has seen six different goal scorers (Indiana Vassilev, Löwen, Niko Gioacchini, Adeniran, Klauss and Stroud) against Sporting KC across three matches this season. Vassilev, Adeniran and Klauss all notched two goals against Sporting KC. 

Sporting KC enters the match on a good run of form, winning their last two regular season matches against Real Salt Lake (3-2) and Minnesota United (3-1) before edging San Jose Earthquakes 4-2 on penalties in the Wildcard Round. Sporting KC are 3-8-6 in road games this season, scoring 18 goals and conceding 30.