Three Things to Kickabout
- Heat – It’s going to be oppressively hot and humid. My limited knowledge of Wales leaves me to believe that the Swans will not enjoy the weather.
- Crowd – Last year this game had so many people in attendance that they had to pull back some advertising banners covering the seats. This year the crowd might be a little lighter due to playing on a weeknight and a repeat visit for Swansea. Regardless of those facts it will be the highest attended game of the year so plan accordingly.
- Goals – This is friendly so who knows maybe the Kickers might actually score one.
This is a game between a pre-season team that played on Saturday against a team that deathly allergic to goals. I’m predicting 1-0 to Swansea. I’m hoping however for a repeat of last year’s game which was one of the highlights of last year’s season game which the Kickers won 2-0.
Official Kickers Preview
The Richmond Kickers (2-10-6) hosts Swansea City AFC (0-1-1) of the world famous English Premier League this Wednesday night, July 19, presented by Virginia Credit Union. The party starts at 5:30 p.m. with live music from the Hit List, RVA food trucks and 20+ craft beers on tap before the Kickers battle the world’s best at 7:30 p.m. at City Stadium.
This will mark the second meeting between the Kickers and Swansea City, and the fourth consecutive season Richmond is hosting a team from the Premier League. Richmond came out on top July 16, 2016 first from an own goal in the 11th minute. Brian Ownby sent a cross in for Sunny Jane just in front of goal as Jordi Amat stepped in to try to clear, but ended up directing the ball into his own net. Following a delay due to storms in the area, the Kickers netted their second goal of the game as Anthony Grant slotted home after Jackson Eskay placed a through ball into his path.
The Kickers come into this friendly after falling on the road to the Harrisburg City Islanders Saturday night. Harrisburg scored the only goal of the game in the 76th minute as James Thomas played a quick pass to Ropapa Mensah. He cut across the top of the Richmond box and took a shot towards the far post and past Matt Turner.
Swansea are looking for their first win of preseason as they have lost one and drawn the second. The Swans opened their preseason on the road at League Two side Barnet July 12. A 40th minute goal lifted Barnet over the Premier League side as Swansea prepared for their trip to the United States. Opening up their three-match tour of the U.S., Swansea earned a 2-2 draw at the Philadelphia Union Saturday, July 15. Leroy Fer headed a deflected shot back towards goal and Kyle Bartley found the back of the net for a tying goal in the 28th minute, following the Union converting a penalty kick in the 6th minute. Swansea took the lead in the 40th minute as Brantley this time set up a chance for Jordan Ayew from 10 yards out. The Union leveled the score in the 58th minute for a draw.
The Kickers return to USL action this Saturday, July 22 as they host Bethlehem Steel FC at City Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7pm and it can be viewed live on the USL Match Center. Tickets are on sale at RichmondKickers.com.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Richmond: Now in his eighth season in Richmond, defender William Yomby (#2) has made three appearances, including two starts. A native of Cameroon, Yomby is now the club captain after making 224 appearances for the Kickers. Midfielder Raul Gonzalez (#27) has a goal and an assist in 12 appearances in his rookie season. The University of Memphis product scored his first professional goal May 21 on the road against the Rochester Rhinos from a free kick. After recently signing with the club, midfielder Oscar Umar (#17) made his professional debut last Saturday at the Harrisburg City Islanders. Umar spent four seasons at Villanova University, making 74 appearances, after being selected to the Right to Dream Academy in Ghana.
Swansea: Now the club captain for the new season, midfielder Leon Britton (#7) has made over 500 appearances with the Swans, and is the only player to play with Swansea in all four divisions. Britton saw a limited number of appearances during the 2016/17 season, only seeing the field on 16 occasions. Coming on loan from Chelsea FC, forward Tammy Abraham (#10) looks to make his debut with the Swans when they come to Richmond. Last season, Abraham scored 26 goals for Championship club Bristol City after much success within the Chelsea youth system. Signing with the Swans as their third most expensive signing, midfielder Roque Mesa (#51) made his debut in the Swans last outing, setting up the play that ended with the first goal for Swansea against the Philadelphia Union. Only one player bested his 2,185 passes in La Liga last season while he was Las Palmas. He made 35 appearances, scoring on one occasion in the 2016/17 season.
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