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KC Current Roster Part 2

Breaking down the new coaches and the keeper depth



Vlatko Andonovski at training | Credit: Thad Bell

In part two of the series looking at the Kansas City Current roster,  we will cover the coaching staff and the goalkeepers.

Part one was an overall look at how the roster was built.


Starting at the top:

It was almost a clean sweep of the coaching staff as well as others across various departments for the Kansas City Current. Constant change has been the key consistency for the Current coaching staff. After a very strong finish to the 2022 season with a surprising run, the Current quickly and mysteriously fired Matt Potter after a poor start in 2023. More than the record seemed to be in play at the time.

This gave an opportunity for assistant coach Caroline Sjöblom to become the interim head coach. Sjöblom was in a bad spot from the start. She was expected to make the team better and change the playing style while having little time to implement those changes.

The team would have glimpses of success but could never put it together for long periods of time. While Sjöblom appears to be a good coach, she did not have the time or experience to fully transform the Current.

With Vlatko Andonovski a target for the Current management well before the World Cup, Sjöblom was doomed from the start. After the World Cup, Andonovski turned in his resignation to U.S. National Team and the Current owners and management immediately put on a high press to get him back to Kansas City.

It had all the earmarks of a perfect fit for the Current. Andonovski has resided in Kansas City for years after moving here while playing indoor soccer. He coached youth, the Kansas City Comets and then was the first and only head coach of FC Kansas City.

Andonovski was a surprise to everyone with experience in the previous two women’s professional leagues and was quickly downplayed as “just a youth coach” or “just an indoor coach”.

While everyone outside of Kansas City underestimated him, many locally knew he was a good coach that just needed a chance. The Macedonian born player turned coach quickly earned a stellar reputation.

FC Kansas City not only played well under his leadership that first season, they finished tied for first but behind the Western New York Flash on goal differential. They were also level with the Portland Thorns but ahead on the tie breaking stat.

While FC Kansas City fell in the semifinals of the inaugural season, Andonovski identified their weaknesses and corrected them the following season, and the season after that.

In 2014 and 2015 both, FC Kansas City started off alright but as the season progressed the team improved, making the playoffs again and again. In both of those seasons, Kansas City went on to win the NWSL Cup.

The following two seasons FC Kansas City was devastated with players out with injuries, maternity, and retirement. The team also struggled with ownership issues and at times did not even have the minimum number of players on the roster.

Andonovski went on to coach the Reign where he led them to the playoffs each season before being hired to the U.S. job. With the USWNT he accumulated a record of 51-5-9 but will be remembered for failing to lead them past the Round of 16 in what is considered the most competitive Women’s World Cup to date. Even with the team not living up to their expected potential, it took overtime and penalties where Magan Rapinoe, Sophia Smith and Kelly O’Hara all missed for the U.S. to fall to Sweden.

The new head coach of Kansas City returns to his roots with vastly more experience. When he took over that initial FC Kansas City squad, he was already tactically astute but was used to working from a bare bones base. The FC Kansas City coach and his players had three different home fields and at least twice that number of practice fields. The equipment and staff were minimal at best and somehow he helped mold each player to be a better example of themselves.

Now Andonovski returns as a more experienced and savvy coach, he also returns more sophisticated as well after experiencing what national teams have at their disposal. Technology and training and fitness were all at the highest level.

That has been brought to the Current with new staff and methods and planning and expectations.

Players have raved about the new vibe with Kansas City since day one. “It’s night and day from last year,” forward Kristen Hamilton told media. “The mentality, the work ethic, the grit and the fight we had in the first week is something I have not experienced in a really long time.”

Lo LaBonta talked about how in the first days of training camp, the coaches showed the players clips from last year and explained what they could have done differently that would have turned losses into draws and draws into wins. With just a few key moments they could have made the playoffs.

“They showed us immediately what we need to do better. They gave us a goal and how to get better. It was all laid out for us,” LaBonta explained.

When asked to compare Andonovski now to when she knew him before, LaBonta at first said he was the same, “He still yells at me,” she replied laughing. But then the veteran midfielder added, “Back then he was doing 8000 jobs and what I love is that he has found people that are just as passionate about the game, just as knowledgeable as he is so he has surrounded himself with really good staff members. So, each person is the best at their position.”

On that new staff Andonovski brought in coaches that he knows from various different directions. Assistants Milan Ivanovic, Freya Coombe, Lucas Rodriguez and Ljupčo ‘Raki’ Kmetovski give Andonovski more depth than any of the previous Current coaches enjoyed.

Ivanovic started with Andonovski’s staff with FC Kansas City in 2015. They went together to Seattle with the Reign and then followed to the U.S. Women’s National Team. Ivanovic also played for Andonovski with the Kansas City Comets so they have a long history. He will help do film, breaking it down for players and analyzing what the opponent will do and what his team can do better.

Coombe played in England before coming to the U.S. and being named the head coach of Sky Blue FC (NJ/NY Gotham FC). Coombe then became the first coach of NWSL expansion side Angel City FC. She gives Andonovski another head coach point of view to help challenge him with different view points.

Lucas Rodriguez is another former Kansas City Comets player from when Andonovski coached them. He played professionally outdoors as well as indoors with NASL teams. He was a skilled midfielder and helps translate those skills to the Current players. Rodriguez is the only coaching staff member to be with the Current all four years.

Kmetovski is a well regarded keeper coach and was on Andonovski’s staff in Seattle.


Next up, the Protectors of the net

Kansas City has three keepers under contract and the rights to one more.

AD Franch: Adrianna is better known  as AD and is entering her fourth season with Kansas City. Franch was born in Salina Kansas so is considered local-ish. She was acquired in 2021 from Portland in a trade that sent Abby Smith westward. Franch has played for the U.S. U-20’s, U-23’s and the senior team and a constant at the national team level.

Hope Hisey: Hisey played at the University of Arizona under former FC Kansas City player Becca Moros. She was drafted in January and earned a roster spot in preseason. KC was familiar with her since the trained with the Current last summer and played for the Current II as well.

Hope Hisey | Credit: Thad Bell

Jordan Silkowitz: Jordan was highly rated in college and was taken in the second round in 2023. First player drafted out of Iowa State. Sent on loan to the Brisbane Roar in Australia and recently recalled.

Halle Mackiewicz: Another highly rated keeper selected in the draft. She was the first keeper taken in the 2024 draft. A standout at Clemson. Did not report and is recovering from an injury. Will possibly report in the summer.

Position battle?

Right now, there is no doubt, Franch is the clear number one. Tons of experience, leadership, a commanding presence in the box and in interviews. The only question is how long before she is challenged for the number one spot.


Last season Franch and Cassie Miller traded starts depending on who was in form at the time. With Miller traded away, it leaves Franch alone with NWSL experience.

Silkowitz would have to be considered the backup keeper behind Franch. She had a full season in training with the Current last year and played most of a season in Australia. The Brisbane fans loved her and she made some great saves while there. Last year’s coaching staff thought she would be earning starts this season after a year of learning.

Hisey may be competing for the backup role since she has been in preseason with the Current and earned a contract a few weeks ago that was just recently announced.

Purely on experience, Franch is the number one but as she continues to age, will Silkowitz or Hisey start earning starts? Will Mackiewicz show up and wow the coaching staff? Only time will tell but it is a pretty safe bet that Franch makes the start in the historic opening of CPKC Stadium.

AD Franch | Credit: Thad Bell

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