Loudoun United wraps up a 5 game in 16 day period of games hoping to end on a up note. They lost to Nashville SC Saturday which gave Nashville a share of first, then lost to Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC Tuesday, which allowed them to leapfrog Nashville into first. Their opponent tonight should they win can sit between Nashville and Pittsburgh in 2nd in the East pending weekend matches, the just-right portion of this little tale. With 12 points to make to get to the red line and 4 matches left, Loudoun is playing for some pride, but also looking at players for next season.
Key player: Whomever comprises deep midfield tonight?
I meant to type this, because the last time I saw Nelson Martinez he was limping off the field, and newly signed D.C. United loanee Moses Nyeman played Saturday and Tuesday, the latter albeit in 45 minutes. Antonio Bustamante is not among the loanees so he’s either in consideration for the first team or perhaps more likely injured and/or after seeing a ton of minutes the last two weeks.
Location: Segra Field (Leesburg, VA)
Kickoff time: 7:30pm Eastern
Projected Loudoun starting 11: Well, Griffin Yow had a minor knock on Tuesday, and coach Ryan Martin said afterwards taking him off was more precautionary. He’ll probably rest up and play next week before going off to the United States U-17 team for World Cup duty, but the reason I bring up Yow and his subbing off is that the team planned for new signing Ali Ndour to come on, but this changed things of course. Whether it does enough to give Ndour a start remains to be seen, but he’ll definitely be in the 18 and probably come on.
Starters: Earl Edwards Jr.; Connor Presley, Collin Verfurth, Harri Hawkins, Chris Odoi-Atsem; Andrew Lubahn, Martinez; Carlos Alvarez, Gordon Wild, Christian Sorto; Kyle Murphy
Bench: Calle Brown, Hunter Gorskie, Miguel Garduno, Ted Ku-DiPietro, Nyeman, Ndour, Elvis Amoh
Key Tampa player: Sebastian Guenzatti
Last Saturday Loudoun faced a 17 goal scorer (Daniel Rios), gave up a goal and lost. Tonight Guenzatti also comes in on 17 as well, but to the larger point, Tampa has feasted on MLS2 teams this year, going 6-1-2 and outscoring them 19-7 in the process. Tampa’s fine tuning for the playoffs, and Loudoun’s going to need to shut down the captain.
Referee: Ismir Pekmic
Available streaming: ESPN+ (click here and subscribe to ESPN+, and your friends at B&RU get a little bit of cash!)
What are you drinking?: Mas agua, maybe even coffee with final whistle temps maybe hitting the low 50s.
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