Sporting's Nagamura likely to miss playoff opener

Sporting Kansas City midfielder Paulo Nagamura is unlikely to feature in his club's opening playoff match on Sunday because of an ankle injury.

Nagamura sustained the problem in Sporting's final regular season match against Philadelphia last Wednesday and was removed from the contest as a precaution.

But after further tests, it has been confirmed that Nagamura has suffered an ankle sprain that could keep the 29-year-old out of Sporting's Eastern Conference semifinal first leg against either Chicago or Houston.

"It's a serious ankle sprain," Sporting head coach Peter Vermes told "I'm very doubtful for our first game. Very doubtful. So it's really going to be when he gets better and when he can play through."

Nagamura is in his first season with the club and has made 27 appearances this term, including 19 starts.