Reigning 2020 USL League One Most Valuable Player and reigning back-to-back Golden Boot winner Emiliano Terzaghi was named USL League One Most Valuable Player for the second consecutive season, the league announced Thursday.
“Ganar este premio tan importante por segunda vez consecutiva significa un gran orgullo para mi de gran importancia porque volver a conseguirlo siempre es más difícil que hacerlo por primera vez.”
“Winning this important award for the second time in a row means a lot to me,” Terzaghi said. “It was of great importance because getting it again is always more difficult than doing it for the first time.”
“Agradezco a mis compañeros de equipo a todo el staff y la gente que trabaja con nosotros día a día que sin ellos no ubiese sido posible todo este proceso de mi crecimiento.”
I thank my teammates and all the staff and people who work with us every day because without them this whole process of my growth as a member of the Kickers would not have been possible.”
After earning league MVP, Golden Boot, and All-League First Team honors during the truncated 2020 season, Terzaghi continued his ascendancy as the face of USL League One as he scored 18 goals in 27 appearances — averaging a goal every 128.4 minutes — setting the league’s new single-season goal scoring record. Furthermore, Terzaghi now sits as the league’s all-time leading goal scorer with 28 goals over the last two seasons.
“To follow up the 2020 Golden Boot with an 18 goal 2021 Golden Boot season is an incredible accomplishment,” Chief Sporting Officer and Head Coach Darren Sawatzky said. “He was a known commodity going into this season so it makes it even more difficult.
“Emi’s presence in our club is much greater than the statistics he has accumulated over the past two seasons. He is a humble professional who comes to work each day ready to help the team in any way needed. There are some very good players in USL League One, having Emi in our culture here day to day showcases for all of us how valuable he is for our club.”
Terzaghi shared the responsibility of acting as club co-captain alongside Ivan Magalhães during the 2021 season, and Terzaghi led by example who specialized in changing the outcomes of matches as he scored the game-winning goal in six matches as well as assisting Jonathan Bolanos’ game winner against North Texas on July 3.
The Argentine talisman’s ability to come up clutch was on full display in the waning weeks of the season as the Kickers went on a five-match winning streak to guarantee its first appearance in the postseason since 2016 with Terzaghi scoring the game winner in four of the matches and a brace in the regular-season home finale against Forward Madison.
The consistency displayed by Terzaghi throughout the season cannot be overstated as the forward picked up Player of the Month honors during the months of July and October. Terzaghi was a fixture in the league’s weekly honors earning Cleer Audio Player of the Week in week 13 as well as recognition in the Cleer Audio Team of the Week during weeks 5, 17, 19, 25, 26, 28, and 30.
El rey’s heroics on the pitch saw him earn his second-straight Red Army Supporters’ MVP that was awarded to him following the conclusion of the regular-season home finale.
“¡Soy muy agradecido y trabajo muy duro para representar a nuestra comunidad al club para llevarlo a lo más alto! ¡También devolverle a los fans todo el cariño que nos dan siempre ! ellos son un parte muy especial para mi.”
“I am very grateful and I work very hard to represent our community and this club to take it to the top! To give back to the fans after all the love they always give us, they are a very special part of me!” – Richmond Kickers Announcment
Richmond Kickers’ starting goalkeeper and goalkeeping coach, Akira Fitzgerald was named the USL League One Goalkeeper of the Year for his record-breaking efforts during the 2021 season, the league announced Tuesday.
“It’s a great honor to win this award because there are many top goalkeepers in this league who had fantastic seasons and will go on and have great careers,” Fitzgerald said. “I’ve been extremely fortunate to have played this long and to win this award at this stage of my career is a great accomplishment.
“I feel more motivated than ever to continue to push on and achieve more for the club and myself.”
The 34-year-old veteran enjoyed a career year as he set the new single-season league record of 89 saves. Furthermore, Fitzgerald recorded 10 clean sheets that led all goalkeepers as the Kickers finished tied for second in total clean sheets behind first-place Greenville Triumph SC.
Fitzgerald would also record a 72.1 percent save percentage ranking ahead of 2021 Golden Glove winner Rashid Nuhu of Union Omaha.
“Being able to lead the league in clean sheets was an incredible collective effort that we as a group can take great pride in,” Fitzgerald said. “Every player played a role in making sure we were defensively solid each week, and I have to give an incredible amount of love to my backline who always put everything they had into each match.
He continued, “I think it also showed how strong our goalkeeping department was to set a single-season record in saves while also helping the team into the playoffs. I want to thank Austin Aviza and Austin Causey for their incredible professionalism and hard work throughout the year because without them it wouldn’t have been possible to achieve these kinds of numbers and success for the club.”
Fitzgerald previously was named to the USL League One All-League First Team earlier in November 2021 before being named as a finalist for Goalkeeper of the Year. He was nominated alongside Omaha’s Nuhu and New England Revolution II’s Joe Rice — a former Richmond Kicker and understudy to Fitzgerald in 2019.
“It’s a great accomplishment for Akira after a very good season,” Chief Sporting Officer and Head Coach Darren Sawatzky said. “You need your goalkeeper to keep you in games and Akira has done that consistently over the past two seasons.
“He is in charge of our goalkeeping department here in Richmond and we look forward to him between the pipes and running training in 2022 and beyond. I cannot think of a human being with more class, and I am happy he is being recognized.” – Richmond Kickers Announcement
Photos and Game Summary: Kickers Win In Dramatic Fashion Move Up To Fourth
In a game that saw 5 goals the Kickers prevailed due to the Golden Boot of Emiliano Terzaghi.
Official Kickers Game Summary
The Richmond Kickers (11-8-7) prevailed in dramatic fashion in the Red’s final regular-season home match of the year, beating Forward Madison (6-8-11) in the final matchup of the series, winning the Henny Derby Cup and extending their winning streak to five matches.
The final matchup in the 2021 Henny Derby series was underway and the crowd was roaring at Richmond’s final regular-season home match which was the attendance record-setting match of the season.
Both teams spent the first five minutes feeling each other out, but in the eighth minute of the match, Josiah Trimmingham received a ball with his back to the goal in the corner of the box, made a quick move to turn around and fired off a shot into the far post to bring Forward Madison up 1-0 for an early lead against the run of play.
In the 15th minute, Richmond surged up the left flank, Jonathan Bolanos leading the attack with an incisive run crossed the ball into the far post for Matt Bolduc who leaped into the air to redirect a header across the goal but Phil Breno collected the attempted shot.
Several minutes later, Nil Vinyals placed a corner kick into Emiliano Terzaghi at the near post which he fired towards the goal but the attempt went just wide of the post. At the 32-minute mark, Vinyals delivered another brilliant corner kick into the far post. Chris Cole came bursting into the heart of the box and jumped head and shoulders over his markers to power a thunderous header into the back of the net, earning his first professional-career goal and leveling the scoreline for the Reds, 1-1.
Shortly after, Richmond was on the front foot again with Bolanos sprinting through the Madison half. Bolanos took his time and took a shot on goal, Breno deflected the shot towards Terzaghi who was pouncing on the ball. Terzaghi managed to make contact with the ball and it floated into the air over Breno and eventually hit the back of the net to move Richmond into the lead, 2-1 going into the second half.
Soon after returning to the pitch, Forward Madison was in dangerous territory approaching the Richmond goal. A well-placed cross into the box brought Akira Fitzgerald into action and an unfortunate deflection off of Esteban Calvo redirected the ball into the back of the net, once again leveling the scoreline, 2-2.
After 30 minutes of intense back-and-forth between both teams, Forward Madison earned a free kick just outside of the Richmond box. The dead-ball kick sailed just under the crossbar, nearly beating Fitzgerald, but the veteran keeper got a glove on it to keep the Reds level.
A few minutes later, Richmond answered back with their own threatening attack. Juan Pablo Monticelli, who came into the match off the bench chased down a long-through ball far up the left wing and sent a low-driven cross into the Forward Madison box. The ball crossed through the box and reached Terzaghi who put his laces through a shot that slammed into the back of the net at the far post.
With Terzaghi’s second goal, he broke the USL League One single-season goal-scoring record (16), previously set by North Texas SC’s Ronaldo Damus in 2019. Terzaghi notched his 17th goal of the season and bagged the Kickers fifth-straight win to bring home the Henny Derby.
After Richmond’s late-season rally and five-match winning streak, the Reds are back on the road to Nebraska to take on the league leaders, Union Omaha, as they rally in the final leg of the 2021 season. Richmond will be at Werner Park, Saturday, October 23. Kickoff for the match is set for 7 p.m. EST.
|First Half||Second Half||Final|
Richmond: Akira Fitzgerald, Chris Cole (55’ – Juan Pablo Monticelli), Ivan Magalhães, Jalen Crisler, Esteban Calvo, Zaca Moran, Ethan Bryant (55’ – Victor Falck), Nil Vinyals (90’ – Nathan Aune, Matt Bolduc (76’ – Luke Pavone), Emiliano Terzaghi, Jonathan Bolanos (76’ – Oalex Anderson)
Unused Substitutes: Austin Causey, Hernan Gonzalez
Forward Madison: Phil Breno, Eric Leonard, Cyrus Rad, Connor Tobin, Aaron Molloy, Josiah Trimmingham, Christian Enriquez (75’ – Audi Jepson), Derek Gebhard (85’ – Carlos Gómez), Justin Sukow, Christian Díaz (46’ – Tyler Allen), R. Sierakowski
Unused Substitutes: Noah Fuson, Jake Keegan, Aidan Hogan, Jesús Pérez
Referee: John Matto
Assistant Referee: Jeffrey Skinker, William Aten
Fourth Official: Andrew Charron
Weather: Windy, 72 ºF
Preview: Playoffs on the Line as Kickers Face Familiar Foe
Kickers are on a four-game winning streak and face Forward Madison yet again. A win and the Kickers are in the playoffs.
Opponent: Madison Forward FC (6-7-11)
Date/Time: Saturday, October 16th, 6:30 PM
Last Result: Kickers 2 – North Texas 1
Weather Forecast From WeatherBug.com
Three Things to Kick About
- Playoffs – For weeks I’ve been saying that if we make the playoffs there is little chance of a home game. My tune is changing. A home playoff game is a real possibility. A win gets us in to the playoffs and another win or two and some other results get us a home game.
- Unexpected Heroes – On Sunday the Kickers went down a goal and all eyes turned to golden boot leader Tergazhi. Instead it was two players that got their first USL1 goals of the season that came up big. In the 80th minute Argentinian Moran found himself with space to shoot and perfectly placed a shot into the upper 90 with his first touch, beating Richard Sanchez for a screamer of a goal, and earning his first goal of the season to bring the scoreline level at 1-1. The Kickers weren’t done. . Late into stoppage time, 95 minutes into the match, Vinyals delivered a set piece directly into the North Texas six-yard box. Ivan Magalhães muscled his way through the North Texas box, beat his marker and sent a thunderous header into the back of the net giving Richmond another dramatic, go-ahead goal.
- Get to the Game – Attendance has been a bit of a roller coaster for the Kicker this year. This Saturday they need every supporter of local soccer in the stands to help push them over the line. It’s been 7 years since the Kickers hosted a playoff game, let’s do this folks.
- Bonus: Forward Madison – This team is the USL1 golden child. They’ve got a marketing team/budget that is second to none. They’ve tapped into a large fan base. This fawning hasn’t resulted in a winning team. The Flamingos as they’re called are having a bad run and are ripe for a Kickers win.
Momentum, we’ve got. Injuries aren’t a major concern right now, (knock on wood). Forward Madison had to play a weeknight game before heading down to Richmond. This game is lining up in the Kickers favor.
Kickers 1 – Forward Madison 0.
Photos and Game Summary: Kickers Take Down Madison
The Kickers winning streak goes to three with another one-goal win.
Official Kickers Game Summary
Emiliano Terzaghi combined with Chris Cole to score in the eighth minute and deliver the Richmond Kickers’ (9-8-7) third-straight win at City Stadium as the Reds earned a 1-0 victory over rivals Forward Madison FC (6-6-11), Wednesday night.
It was a cloudy, rainy night at City Stadium when the referee’s whistle sounded off, and the third Henny Derby of the season was underway. Early in the match, Matt Bolduc received the ball on the left wing, dribbled into the Madison box, and chopped the ball behind his back to cut inside, beating his mark and let a shot off that rolled just wide of the goalpost.
Just a few minutes afterward, some clever interplay between Jonathan Bolanos and Cole on the left wing resulted in Cole finding space wide in the final third. Cole fizzed a low cross into the Madison box and Emiliano Terzaghi pounced on the pass, side-footing it into the goal, adding another goal to his ever-growing goal-tally.
With Richmond in the lead, Forward Madison had some ground to make up and was forced to play less pragmatic, which in turn opened themselves up to more dangerous counter attacks from the Reds’ attackers. The remainder of the first half would be summed up by Richmond’s willingness to absorb pressure and react with a deadly counter-attacking set of players.
Both teams fielded the pitch for the final 45 minutes of the Henny Derby, with Jake Keegan coming off the bench to add firepower to the Mingos’ attack. Madison came out of the gates strong, applying pressure on the Richmond backline when they retained possession.
Richmond continued to lock down the Madison attack in the final third and make do with their opportunities catching the Mingos’ on the back foot. In the 62nd minute, Zaca Moran received the ball deep in his own half, spotted Bolanos across the field, and pinged a long diagonal ball that fell in front of Bolanos perfectly for him to control it in stride. Bolanos dribbled into the box, then cut inside and drilled a shot at the far post, but Phil Breno did just enough to get a hand to it and force it out of bounds.
As the time was winding down, Madison was unable to find space to exploit behind the Richmond defense. The fourth official displayed three minutes of additional stoppage time but Richmond safely facilitated the ball around for the remaining minutes until the final whistle from the referee sounded off and the Reds would be able to enjoy the third clean sheet win in a row.
With the win, the Kickers move into fifth place in the USL League One standings with four matches left in the season. With only six points separating third place and 10th place, the playoff picture is still very much undecided, but the Reds have earned the chance to control their destiny after gaining nine points in the last two weeks.
The match proved to be one of Richmond’s finest defensive efforts of the season as the Reds did not concede a shot on goal during the match. It was a comprehensive performance for all 90 minutes as the Kickers notched their 10th clean sheet of the season which is good for the league lead.
Terzaghi’s goal marked the 15th time the Argentine talisman has found the back of the net this season which extended his lead on the 2021 Golden Boot Race over second-place Marios Lomis who has scored 12. Terzaghi is now within striking distance of the single-season goal-scoring record set by Ronaldo Damus in 2019 when he scored 16 goals for North Texas SC. Furthermore, in less than two seasons, Terzaghi has notched 25 goals for the Kickers — the first player in league history to reach the mark.
Richmond will be back on the road after enjoying their three-match homestand at City Stadium. The Reds travel to Arlington, Texas to face North Texas SC for the second matchup this season. The last time the Kickers faced North Texas was at City Stadium, resulting in a 3-2 win for the Reds at home. The match is set for a 7:00 p.m. kickoff on Sunday, October 10. Fans are encouraged to head to Home Team Grill, Sunday night, for the official watch party as the Reds continue their push for the USL League One playoffs.
|First Half||Second Half||Final|
Richmond: Akira Fitzgerald, Chris Cole, Ivan Magalhaes, Jalen Crisler, Esteban Calvo, Zaca Moran, Matt Bolduc (79’ – Luke Pavone), Nil Vinyals (86’ – Nathan Aune), Jonathan Bolanos (79’ – Devante Dubose), Emiliano Terzaghi, Ethan Bryant (69’ – Victor Falck), Emiliano Terzaghi(85’ – Hernan Gonzalez)
Unused Substitutes: Austin Causey, Oalex Anderson
Forward Madison: Phil Breno, Cyrus Rad, Eric Leonard, Connor Tobin, Christian Enriquez (72’ – Audi Jepson), Aaron Molloy, Jesús Pérez (46’ – Jake Keegan), Tyler Allen (84’ – Josiah Trimmingham), Christian Díaz(64’ – Justin Sukow), R. Sierakowski, Derek Gebhard
Unused Substitutes: Carlos Gómez, Aidan Hogan, Gustavo Fernandes
Referee: William Steffen
Asst. Referee: Nicholas Seymour, Andrew Charron
Fourth Official: JC Griggs
Weather: Cloudy, 78 ºF