A year after being forced to watch Calgary Foothills FC celebrate a national title on their home field, Reading United is back in the USL League Two final hoping to play the same spoiler role at Keterring University’s Attwood Stadium in Flint, Michigan tonight.
The Philadelphia Union affiliate will face a formidable opponent in the Bucks, which rebranded as part of a move to Flint earlier this year but have a long tradition of success in the U.S. amateur ranks. The Bucks boast three playoff championships and five regular season titles. They’ve also won three straight Hank Steinbracher Cup trophies (an annual competion between the League Two, NPSL and National Amateur Cup champions and the cup holders) and boast some 200 alumni who have moved on to the professional ranks.
This year’s group comes into the final with an 8-4-3 W-D-L record with an attack averaging 3 goals a game (45 goals for) but have conceded just under two times per game (27 goals against).
“They’ll be good going forward and committing bodies into the final third,” said Reading United head coach Alan McCann. “They’ve come through some tough tests. We feel our style can expose them defensively. It’s about executing the plan.”
Brazilian Yuri Farkas Guglielmi leads the team with 8 goals and 3 assists while captain Charlie Booth anchors the defense.
Both teams have had dramatic journeys to the final with the Bucks scoring in the final 15 minutes in all three of their playoff games and Reading United stage comebacks in two of their three postseason games.
After going unbeaten en route to the final last year, which they lost 4-2 in overtime, Reading has built a 12-4-1 overall W-D-L record while outscoring opponents 37-16. Reading’s stingy defense is anchored by Philadelphia Union Academy grad Lamine Conte while their offense runs through Brazilian attacking midfielder Felipe Hideki.
A win for Reading would be the second for a local team in the league formerly known as the Premier Development League and a first national title for a non-college amateur team from the region since West Chester United won the Werner Fricker Cup in 2015.
How to Watch
The game is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. and will be streamed on YouTube.