It's time to shine those soccer cleats, Kansas City.
In a press conference at LIVESTRONG Sporting Park (LSP) on Thursday afternoon, MLS Commissioner Don Garber announced the 2013 All-Star Game will be held in Kansas City. The game will be played at 7:30 p.m. CDT on Wednesday, July 31.
Sporting KC manager Peter Vermes will coach the MLS squad against an opponent to be announced at a later date.
It wasn't exactly a surprise, though. It's not that anyone from the league or the team said anything. Ticketmaster, on the other hand, went live with a page listing tickets for sale on Wednesday. I can't imagine Garber was very happy about it.
This game is a big deal for the team and the city. As with the MLB All-Star Game last year, MLS is helping shine a spotlight on Kansas City. While the television viewership won't be as big, there is still a significant audience for the game and an equally significant opportunity to further prove, as Kansas City, KS mayor Joe Reardon said during the press conference, that Kansas City is a soccer town.
Ask anyone who has attended a game at LSP and they will all tell you the same thing. The atmosphere for a game there is absolutely electric.
I have attended almost every game LSP has held in its first two seasons and I can say, without question, it is the best soccer-specific stadium in the country.
Don't believe me? During the media availability for the Gold Cup in 2011, Juan Agudelo told us that LSP was as good or better than Red Bull Arena, his home stadium at the time. Sacha Kljestan said it should be the new national stadium.
So, Kansas City, get ready. The soccer world is coming to town... again.