It’s been a long time since the boys in Red have graced City Stadium, but they’re back this Sunday in a friendly against West Bromwich Albion. Forcing a team to play in Mars-hot temperatures in the midst of their regular season is not ideal, and hopefully unlike last year, no Kicker will suffer a season ending injury. But that rant is for another time.
Kickers are coming off an inspired 3-1 victory against St. Louis after going a goal down. A strike from Yeisley was a thing of beauty (minute 2:40) and should win goal of the year. If the Kickers play like they did against St. Louis, this could be a cakewalk for the home team. However, expect to see Leigh take full advantage of unlimited subs (standard for a friendly) and we’ll see an interesting mix of new and old players take the pitch.
West Bromwich Albion are known as the Baggies. Yes, “Baggies” is their nickname, which is a considerable improvement from their original name, the “West Bromwich Strollers.” This game will be the final game in their East Coast tour that started in Orlando City with a 3-1 loss on the 15th and then a game against Charleston, tonight, Friday the 17th. That means we can expect a roasted, exhausted, and probably grumpy group of 2nd, 3rd, and 4th string players. I expect that a few of the first string will step on the field as they walk from the locker to the bench.
RVANews Soccer Guru
|My knowledge of England is limited to Dr. Who and Monty Python. One thing that’s clear from both those shows is that England is a dark, damp, chilly, and dreary place. The sun, heat, humidity, and our happy attitudes will be too much for these foreigners and they’ll melt like sad little British ice pops.||6|
|I always think that West Brom sounds like it should be right by West Egg, so naturally I’m excited to think that Gatsby, Daisy, Nick, and the crew are coming to town. Then I remember that West Egg is fictional, and I assume West Brom is fictional too. Given that I don’t think any West Brom fans actually exist, I think I might be right this time. Call me crazy, but I think the Kickers are good enough to not lose to an imaginary team. On the chance that this West Brom thing is real, I’ll hedge and go with a draw as my official prediction.||6|
|Crossing the pond and playing two games prior, why wouldn’t the Kickers win? It’s kinda cool to see these English guys coming to town just like last season, but this season I think we will see a different result.||6|
Total Soccer Show
|Those West Brom defenders have never faced the likes of Jason Yeisley. I’m predicting another classic Yeisley volley as the Kickers make West Brom work harder than they’d like for a 2-2 draw in front of a sold out City Stadium.||6|
RVANews Soccer Guru (Richard Hayes): All of Richard’s soccer knowledge comes from playing FIFA on the original Playstation and standing in bars, drinking, and yelling at the television. He also helps run RVA DCU and is a member of American Outlaws Richmond Chapter, which mainly involves drinking and yelling at televisions.
Red Army (Matt Myers) — Reigning Champion: Matt was sent off by Leigh Cowlishaw in a summer camp scrimmage as a pre-teen but has not held that against the team. He’s coming to grips with being a relatively old man now after seeing the youngsters in the Red Army and on the Kickers roster. He’s also attended way more matches than he should admit to, especially for having lived in Richmond a total of one out of the last 13 years.
Richmond Kickers (Kickeroo): The Kicker from down under. He doesn’t really like anyone who isn’t a fan of the Kickers. A daredevil who will pretty much try anything and everything but would rather not talk (on advice from the lawyers) about the incident with the scooter and the Flaming Hoop of Death, he’s also a sensitive marsupial who enjoys long walks on a dew-covered soccer field and watching the sun set behind the goal post. He also shares something with the new Kickers beer, Kick It Hunny hops.
Total Soccer Show (Daryl Grove): Daryl is English, so everything he says about footsoccerball naturally carries more weight because he says it in a British accent. He is also part of the excellent local radio show and podcast Total Soccer Show that keeps track of all soccer related things in an intelligent and fun way. If you’re not listening to the Total Soccer Show, you need to change that posthaste.