St Louis CITY2 will open CITYPARK with an inaugural match against Bundesliga-side Bayer 04 Leverkusen ahead of the 2022 FIFA World Cup on Wednesday, November 16. The international friendly kicks off at 7 p.m. CT with coverage on ESPN+, KMOX (English radio), and Lider Sports Media (Spanish radio).
Matt Schumaker will have the play-by-play for the ESPN+ stream with Dale Schilly as the color analyst and Kristen Carver as the sideline reporter. Nate Gatter and Simon Rose will be on the call for the KMOX radio broadcast and Santiago Beltran and Hector Vega on Lider Media Sports for the Spanish call.
CITY2 constructed a roster a few months prior to its inaugural season in MLS NEXT Pro and finished first in the Western Conference and second overall in the league. St. Louis tallied the second most wins in the league (15), tied for second most points (49), the most road wins (8), third-most goals for (51), seventh least goals allowed (34), and tied for sixth-most clean sheets (7) while seeing 16 different goal scorers and 13 assist providers.
Following a strong regular-season performance that saw CITY2 capture the Western Conference regular-season title, St. Louis took care of business in back-to-back home playoff matches to capture the Western Conference postseason title. CITY2 took down North Texas SC, 2-0 before defeating Tacoma Defiance, 2-1. In those two matches, St. Louis held its opponent to just five total shots on net while generating 11 shots on net of their own.
Bayer 04 Leverkusen struggled out of the gate to begin the 2022-23 Bundesliga season, recording a 1-5-2 mark through the first eight matches which led to the dismissal of former Head Coach Gerardo Seoane. Bayer 04 followed up by hiring former Liverpool, Real Madrid, and Bayern Munich midfielder Xabi Alonso on October 5. Since Alonso's hiring, Leverkusen have gone 4-2-1, outscoring opponents, 16-10 and are currently on a three-match league winning streak.
Leverkusen have seen 13 different goal scorers and are led by French forward Moussa Diaby with six. Diaby's six goals ranks 10th in the Bundesliga. Diaby is tied for the team lead with Kerem Demirbay at three assists.