Sporting Kansas City's U-19s, U-17s and U-15s will head to the Maryland SoccerPlex in Boyds, Md. from May 12-16 for MLS NEXT Flex with the opportunity to clinch a postseason berth in the 2023 MLS NEXT Cup Playoffs. All three squads qualified after finishing amongst the top 64 teams in their age groups based on their points-per-game rank in the 2022-23 MLS NEXT season.
Qualifying teams were drawn into sixteen groups of four, and the winners of each of these groups will automatically qualify for the MLS NEXT Cup Playoffs. The 80-minute U-15 matches and 90-minute U-17 and U-19 matches that end regulation in a draw will move to penalty kicks where the winner of penalty kicks will earn two points, while the loser will take home one point.
“The excellent quality of play at MLS NEXT Flex provides a unique opportunity for players and teams to compete against the best clubs from all over the country,” said MLS Vice President of Player Youth and Development Fred Lipka. “With postseason berths at stake, this event demonstrates the rich talent and heightened level of competition that is evident throughout each age group in MLS NEXT.”
Both Sporting KC's U-17s and U-15s are coming off solid performances at GA Cup including a combined 7-2-4 record with four shootout wins. Sporting's U-19s have been busy competing in MLS NEXT since mid-February and have earned four results in seven regular season matches.
|City SC||Friday, May 12||4:30 p.m.|
|Indiana Fire Academy||Sunday, May 14||1 p.m.|
|Baltimore Armour||Monday, May 15||1 p.m.|
|St Louis City SC||Saturday, May 13||11 a.m.|
|San Jose Earthquakes||Sunday, May 14||3 p.m.|
|Total Futbol Academy||Tuesday, May 16||10:45 a.m.|
|New York Red Bulls||Saturday, May 13||9 a.m.|
|Vancouver Whitecaps FC||Sunday, May 14||9 a.m.|
|Wake FC||Tuesday, May 16||8:30 a.m.|
Watch on MLS Season Pass
Eighteen MLS NEXT Flex games will stream live on MLS Season Pass, the subscription service from Apple and Major League Soccer on the Apple TV app, available in more than 100 countries and regions. Amongst those is Sporting KC's U-19 match against City SC on Friday, May 12 at 4:30 p.m. ET.
MLS NEXT Cup Playoffs
The MLS NEXT season concludes with the 2023 MLS NEXT Cup Playoffs, which will be held June 17-25 at Toyota Soccer Center and MoneyGram Soccer Park in Dallas-Fort Worth.
For the single-elimination competition, 32 teams per age group will qualify based on regular-season play or by winning their group at MLS NEXT Flex. Teams that do not qualify for the MLS NEXT Cup Playoffs can participate in the MLS NEXT Cup Showcase, which will be held at the same venue.
MLS NEXT Flex will also provide an opportunity for North America’s top youth talent to be seen by college, youth national team and professional coaches, as well as scouts and evaluators, in a single location. The MLS Match Evaluator program, which features former professional players who are trained on-site to identify top talent, will continue at both MLS NEXT Flex and in the MLS NEXT Cup Playoffs.
Subscribing to MLS Season Pass
With an MLS Season Pass subscription, fans can enjoy all MLS and Leagues Cup matches, and hundreds of MLS NEXT Pro and MLS NEXT games, on billions of devices through the Apple TV app on smart TVs, streaming devices, Apple devices, set-top boxes, and game consoles, as well as on the web at tv.apple.com. Fans can subscribe to MLS Season Pass on the Apple TV app for $14.99 per month during the season or $99 per season, and Apple TV+ subscribers can sign up at a special price of $12.99 per month or $79 per season.1 A subscription to MLS Season Pass will be included with each MLS Club full-season ticket account. Through Family Sharing, up to six family members can share the subscription using their own Apple ID and password.
1To watch MLS Season Pass, customers must update to iOS 16.2 or later, iPadOS 16.2 or later, tvOS 16.2 or later, and macOS 13.1 or later. Fans around the world can enjoy Major League Soccer matches on MLS Season Pass in English, Spanish, or French where available, including closed captions.
About MLS NEXT
MLS NEXT is a new paradigm for player development, launched in 2020 to transform youth soccer in North America. Founded on a collaborative approach to governance and a commitment to innovation, MLS NEXT players have access to the highest level of competition, training and personal development opportunities that will prepare them for their futures, both in soccer and in life. Membership for the 2022-23 season includes 137 clubs, 628 teams and over 13,000 players across the U.S. and Canada. Official partners of MLS NEXT include adidas, Allstate, DoorDash, and the University of South Carolina. For more information about MLS NEXT, visit www.mlssoccer.com/mlsnext.