San Antonio FC (2-0-1) is set to defend their undefeated streak as 2017 expansion side Reno 1868 (0-2-1) visits Toyota Field for the first time on Saturday.
Reno is still looking for their first victory, with their only point on the table coming from a 1-1 draw against Vancouver. The Nevada club sits second from bottom on the western table.
Despite their record, Reno hasn’t had trouble scoring this season. Part of that efficiency is due to USL all-time leading scorer Dane Kelly adding two goals to his tally with his new club. Three of Reno’s four goals this year have been headers, meaning San Antonio’s tall central defenders Sebastien Ibeagha and Stephen McCarthy may be called on to get physical inside their penalty area.
The match is San Antonio FC’s last home contest until May as the Texas club visits the Pacific Northwest to face Seattle, Portland, and Vancouver in the next three matches.
Match Details: Game Four. San Antonio, TX. Friday 4/15/2017. Kickoff 7:30 CDT
How to Watch: SanAntonioFC.com, USL Match Center
Keys for SAFC: Despite their place on the table and their negative goal differential, Reno’s attack is extremely dangerous. SAFC has to minimize the damage Dane Kelly and the Reno attack exert while finding their stride early. If Billy Forbes isn’t able to generate goals, SAFC must find another way sooner than their late point-saving goal scored last week against Colorado Springs.
Player to Watch: One consistency between 2016 and 2017 is the strong holding midfield play shown by San Antonio FC. Pecka will likely be tasked with being a defensive-minded midfielder and could be the difference between victory and defeat. With the firepower bring brought from Reno, we could see Michael Reed or Rafa Castillo play further back than previous matches as well.
Pitch Black News Projected Starting XI (4-3-3): Cardone; Newnam, Ibeagha, McCarthy, Cochrane; Reed, Castillo, Pecka; Tyrpak, Elizondo, Forbes