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Seattle Sounders vs Sporting Kansas City: MLS preview, tips and predictions

Seattle Sounders will hope to extend their unbeaten run to four MLS games this weekend as they take on a Sporting Kansas City side who are struggling to plug the gap in a leaky defence.

The hosts consolidated seventh place in the Western Conference with their 1-1 draw against MLS leaders Los Angeles FC last time out and will be heavy favourites for this clash.

Sporting Kansas City, meanwhile, occupy 12th place in the Western Conference and only claimed their first away win of the season when travelling to Nashville last time around.

RealSport101's Harry Smith is on hand to provide a comprehensive preview of this well-poised MLS game, including team news, predicted lineups and betting selections.

Seattle Sounders vs Sporting Kansas City Team News

Seattle Sounders will be without star striker Raul Rudiaz for the visit of Kansas City this weekend after the Uruguayan striker suffered a hamstring injury during the international break. Rudiaz was absent for the game against Los Angeles FC and will also miss this clash.

Manager Brian Schmeltzer could opt for a change in the left-back department ahead of the visit of Kansas City his weekend with Kelyn Rowe pushing to replace Nouhou Tolo.

Kansas City boss Peter Vermes could make just one change to the side that beat Nashville SC 2-1 last time out with central midfielder Roger Espinoza pushing to replace Cam Duke, who struggled to make an impact against Gary Smith's side.

The visitors will be without four first-team players for the trip to Seattle with Alan Pulido, Ozzie Cisneros, Nikola Vujonic and Gadi Kinda all set to miss out. Vujonic is struggling with a calf injury and will likely miss the trip to Lumen Field, but could return in time for the game against the New York Red Bulls.

Confirmed Absentees

Seattle Sounders: Joao Paulo, Yelmar Gomez, Raul Rudiaz

Sporting Kansas City: Alan Pulido, Ozzie Cisneros, Nikola Vujonic, Gadi Kinda

Predicted Lineups

Seattle Sounders (4-2-3-1): Frei; A.Roldan, Ragen, Arreaga, Rowe; Rusnak, Vargas; C.Roldan, Lodeiro, Morris; Montero

Sporting Kansas City (4-1-4-1): Melia; Zusi, Isimat-Mirin, Fontas, Ndenbe; Walker; Russell, Hernandez, Espinoza, Salloi; Shelton

Seattle Sounders vs Sporting Kansas City score prediction

Seattle Sounders were denied a third successive MLS victory last weekend when a late Cristian Arango goal salvaged a point for Los Angeles FC in a 1-1 draw at Lumen Field. The home side are on the fringes of the MLS playoff places following a return of 13 points from their last six league outings.

The Sounders are an intimidating outfit to face on home turf and welcome Sporting Kansas City to Lumen Field having won three and drawn one of their last four home outings. That will give Brian Schmeltzer's side plenty of confidence as they look to improve a run of four defeats from their last five MLS games against Kansas City.

The away side's form is much more concerning ahead of this fixture. Kansas City did end a run of poor form with a shock away win against Nashville SC. The Wizards have still won just one of their last nine away games in MLS ahead of Saturday's clash with an in-form Seattle Sounders.

Kansas City currently have the second-worst defensive record in MLS having conceded 29 goals in 17 games and while Seattle Sounders' Raul Rudiaz is unavailable, the home side are still capable of causing all sorts of problems to this leaky Kansas City defence.

Score Prediction: Seattle Sounders 2-1 Sporting Kansas City

Harry Smith's Tip: Over 1.5 Home Goals.

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