Images: Darren Abate / USL
San Antonio FC will look to take their fourth win in a row Saturday night when LA Galaxy II visit Toyota Field.
Since their 3-0 loss to Orange County on July 14, SAFC has come away with perfect results, catapulting them back into the top 8 of the USL Western Conference. With games in hand, a win Saturday night has the potential to move SA into 6th place.
But despite the club’s poor record, LA Galaxy II will prove to be a challenge.
In short, this team can score. LA is 3rd in the West in goals scored with 36, relying heavily on leading scorer Ethan Zubak (9 goals) and 16 year old Efrain Alvarez (8 goals). Unfortunately for the dynamic goal scorers, LA tops the Western Conference in goals conceded with 42.
Alvarez is the current poster child of American-born players with eligibility to play for Mexico. The youngest signing in USL history, and brother of SAFC’s first-ever signing Carlos Alvarez, Efrain has the talent to make waves in either of the two national teams for which he is eligible. He has played youth level with Mexico, but with the USMNT’s purging of old-guard players, Alvarez has the potential to play alongside other young players like Pulisic, McKennie, and Sargent. Hopefully someone from U.S. Soccer has picked up the phone, or Alvarez could be the latest great talent lost to Mexico.
Update: Shoutout to Sam Doerr for bringing this to my attention. Bummer.
SAFC Quotes from this week:
“We need wins, so the urgency is there,” SAFC captain Ryan Roushandel said. “We know we need points and we want to win, especially at home, so the guys have really raised their level over the past week. We’re paying more attention to detail and we’re doing it as a team. We had a lot of different guys play over our three matches last week, so that shows the depth we have and the trust we have in each other to get results.”
Head Coach Darren Powell: “I’m extremely proud of the players’ application to earn three wins over the past eight days. It’s great to come to OKC and earn our first victory against this good organization and a well-coached team. We’re pleased to earn the three points and to show the character that we did tonight to earn a win after going a goal down.”
Cyprian Hedrick: “It’s big to earn our third win in a week. This was a big result to earn nine points (in three matches) and put us on the right track. Everybody worked hard and this was a difficult game for us, but we pulled through, and the most important is we were able to earn the three points and finish the week on a positive note.”
Charlie Ward: “Things have turned around quickly for us, and after our match against Orange County we got together as a group and said that we needed to put things right, and we’ve done our talking on the pitch. We could talk all day in the locker room, but we went out and got nine points in three games and we want to carry that into next Saturday, because we’re still not where we want to be.”
LA Galaxy II
Form: 5-11-5 (20 pts, 14th place) WWLLD, previous match 1-1 vs Swope Park Rangers
Card Accumulation Warnings: Emmanuel Appiah (4), Julian Buescher (4)
San Antonio FC
Form: 8-5-7 (31 pts, 8th place) DLWWW, previous match 2-1 win at OKC
Card Accumulation Warnings: Cesar Elizondo (4), Pecka(4), Diego Restrepo (4)
Two Ten Soccer Projected Starting XI
(4-2-3-1) Restrepo; King, Hedrick, McCarthy, Cochrane; Lopez, Ward; Gordon, Bryant, Murphy; Guzman
Images: San Antonio FC, RGVFC
Jonathan Check: San Antonio 2-0 LA
Larry Leathers: San Antonio 2-0 LA
Jose Mario Jimenez: San Antonio 4-0 LA
Kyle Mahnke: San Antonio 3-2 LA
How to watch: ESPN+ (?) / Fox Sports Southwest / Fox Sports Go, 7:30 pm central time
Follow along on social media: #SAvLA @TwoTenSoccer @CheckJFooty @LarryLeathers87 @Kyle_Mahnke