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Preview: Kickers Hosting Rare Friday Night Game

The game is one of a handful of USL1 games that will be televised on the CBS Sports Golazo Network!

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Opponent:  One Knoxville
Date/Time: Friday, May 3rd, 7:00 PM (one hour later than earlier weekend games)
Last Result: 1(5) – 1(3) PK Win at Greenvilee Triumph
Up Next: Away vs. Chattanooga, Saturday, May 11th at 7PM

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Three Things to Kick About

  1. Hope Springs Eternal – The Kickers beat in PKs the Greenville Triumph in the inaugural Jaegermester Cup. It was arguably the team’s best performance so far despite still being depleted due to injuries. As a supporter I hope that gives the Kickers the little burst of confidence that they need to turn it around. It is also what I’ve said after every Open Cup win but so far that confidence hasn’t appeared.
  2. Stats – Surprisingly the Kickers are towards the top of the league in several stats including, 4th in goals with 7,  6th in Shots with 60, 3rd in conversion rate at 17%, 3rd in passing accuracy at 81% and 4th with passes at 2,347. The not so good stats include no clean sheets in league play and 2nd highest in goals conceded. It’s not a big leap to say if the Kickers could get their defense together the table would look dramatically different and the Kickers wouldn’t be sitting in 10th out of 12.
  3. Shellow Time – Ryan Shellow so far this season has been the backup keeper to Pablo Jara. After some impressive performances in cup matches, it might be time to switch things up and give Ryan the start in a league game. To be clear I don’t think all the losses can be pinned on Pablo, the rest on the team, but at this point I’m in a WTH not spot when it comes to the keeper.

Prediction

After the pre-season dust had settled many pundits were picking One Knoxville as the USL1 front runner. The Greenville Triumph and surprisingly newcomers Spokane Velocity had something to say about that and sit above One Knoxville. One Knoxville is a quality team and the Kickers have their work cut out for them. If I knew we had all our injured players back I’d be optimistic but I’ve heard nothing about those players (Terzaghi, Dakota, etc.) getting back on the field.  So I’m not optimistic. I think the Kickers will give the fans hope with an early but as has often be the case for the past year, they’ll give up the lead and take the L.

Kickers 1
One Knoxville 2

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Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game.