Republic FC announced it will fully refund anyone who purchased additional tickets in the presale for Saturday’s match against the Swope Park Rangers, which had temporarily been moved to Sacramento. Sacramento Bee file
Republic FC announced it will fully refund anyone who purchased additional tickets in the presale for Saturday’s match against the Swope Park Rangers, which had temporarily been moved to Sacramento. Sacramento Bee file

Soccer

Republic FC was gifted a home playoff match. Then the league changed its mind

By Jon Schultz

jschultz@sacbee.com

October 24, 2017 01:40 PM

UPDATED October 24, 2017 01:57 PM

After initially believing they would host their next playoff match, Republic FC will instead travel to Kansas City, where they will face the Swope Park Rangers on Saturday.

The United Soccer League on Tuesday reversed a decision from a day earlier that would have moved the Western Conference semifinal to Sacramento because of “challenges that arose” at Children’s Mercy Victory Field, the Rangers’ home pitch. The game instead will be played at Children’s Mercy Park, home of Sporting Kansas City of Major League Soccer, according to a USL news release. Kickoff is scheduled for 2 p.m. PDT.

Republic FC, the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference, upset the top overall seed, Real Monarchs SLC, in a penalty kick shootout on Saturday. Sacramento went 0-1-1 against Swope Park, the West’s No. 4 seed, in the regular season.

“After working with all parties, the Swope Park Rangers and USL agreed Saturday’s playoff contest, and future contests in the 2017 USL Cup Playoffs, would be held at Children’s Mercy Park, one of the finest venues in Major League Soccer,” the league said in a news release. “The USL sincerely apologizes for any inconvenience caused to the supporters of the Swope Park Rangers and Sacramento Republic FC, and to the players and partners of both organizations.”

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The fluctuating site for the match caused confusion among fans from both teams.

Republic FC minority owner Kevin Nagle tweeted Monday evening, “SRFC fans, we share your frustration related to Saturday’s playoff match. We’re waiting on details from @USL and hope to share them soon.”

Republic FC announced it will fully refund anyone who purchased additional tickets in the presale, and season-ticket holders who opted in for seats will not be charged and will remain on the list should a future playoff match be played at Papa Murphy’s Park.

The match will be broadcast on CW31 and Republic FC is hosting multiple watch parties, including at de Vere’s Irish Pub, Chando’s Cantina and SacTown Sports Bar.