Match: Pittsburgh Riverhounds vs. Bethlehem Steel FC
Date: Saturday, August 26th
Time: 7:00pm EST Highmark Stadium, Pittsburgh, PA (go if you can, it’s a great park)
Refs: REF: Tori Penso AR1: Brian Miller AR2: Austin Saini 4TH: Paul Deverse
How Pittsburgh Should Look: Well, let’s start with the positive. Pittsburgh have one of the best attacking groups in the league. Corey (Werner) Hertzog, Kevin Kerr, Kay Banjo, Chevy Walsh and Romeo Parkes on their day are all lethal. Recently, the Hounds have rode them and the impressive performances of Trey Mitchell and have used that positive momentum to be in striking distance of a playoff spot. They also have a pretty solid defense lead by Jamal Jack, Gale Agbossoumonde and their best full back is some guy named Taylor Washington. The ‘Hounds are a playoff contender that might be undone by failing to get some points and not having any games left in hand.
We all know that former Steel full back Taylor Washington was picked up by the Hounds and has been putting in consistent work again this year. Bethlehem will be intimately familiar with their former teammate, but wait, there’s more. Trey Mitchell apparently dislocated his shoulder (the story being that’s just a thing that happens to him now) but he was ruled to be out for the year following their game last weekend. Figuring that Hunter Gilstrap, the goalkeeper coach probably wasn’t itching to get in-between the sticks in a game the Hounds went out and snatched up another former Steel player. Enter Matt Perrella. Now before we go off the deep end and assume three points, Perrella was nominated for the golden glove after a solid season with New Jersey Copa FC in the NPSL. Needless to say, this will be incredibly interesting.
What Steel Should Look Like: Well, Seku Conneh got himself a three match ban for the scrum at the end of the last match against LouCity, so it’ll be Cory Burke up top I’d think. However, given the pace of Chris Nanco and the lack of it through the middle for Pittsburgh, I wouldn’t mind seeing Chris up top. Steel have done well against teams around them in the table, so hopefully seeing a team like Pittsburgh can right the ship a bit. Poor finishing has handcuffed this team recently. Hopefully the chances are abundant and turned in because I really think everything else is clicking. Auston Trusty should be back to pairing with USL vet and an absolute rock solid defender in Hugh Roberts. After an abysmal performance (and an even worse tattoo choice after it) by Richie Marquez last weekend I’m more than ok with not seeing him again.
Andre Blake is back for the first team so I’d expect to see Jake McGuire (viva las Chivas) in net which bodes poorly for the Hounds attack.
Predict things? Yeah, I guess so. Steel get a big win on the road before Orlando next week, 3-1.