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High-Powered Rowdies, Red Bulls II Clash

By NICHOLAS MURRAY -, 10/24/17, 5:04PM EDT


Eastern Conference Semifinal sees Tampa Bay, New York enter off big wins

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – A pair of clubs that reached the 50-goal mark in the regular season clash in the Eastern Conference Semifinals of the 2017 USL Cup Playoffs on Saturday night at Al Lang Stadium as the No. 3-seed Tampa Bay Rowdies and No. 7-seed New York Red Bulls II both look to build on impressive attacking performances in the opening weekend of the postseason. Kickoff for #TBRvNY is set for 7:30 p.m. ET and the game can be seen live on the USL Match Center.

The @TampaBayRowdies continued their outstanding home record in their first outing in the USL Cup Playoffs with a 3-0 victory against No. 6-seed FC Cincinnati this past Saturday, giving the club its 12th victory in the USL regular season and postseason at Al Lang Stadium this season. Marcel Schäfer’s pair of first-half goals continued the former German international’s stellar season for the club, while the side recorded its 11th shutout in the USL regular season and postseason at Al Lang Stadium to maintain its undefeated record all-time against FCC.

@NYRBII also put in a dominant display as it upset the No. 2-seed Charleston Battery 4-0 as four different players found the net for the visitors at MUSC Health Stadium. The defending USL Cup champion, New York returned to the type of form that earned it a place in the USL Cup Playoffs for a third consecutive season against the Battery. Including its postseason win, the Red Bulls II have averaged 2.9 goals per game over its last 10 outings. That span also includes both prior meetings between the Rowdies and Red Bulls II this season, with New York having taken a 4-2 victory on Sept. 2 at MSU Soccer Park and Tampa Bay a 3-2 victory on Oct. 4 at Al Lang Stadium.

Opta Says

5 – Tampa Bay midfielder Marcel Schäfer’s second goal against FC Cincinnati was his fifth from outside the penalty area this season, having finished tied for the league-lead in the regular season with four.

49 – New York midfielder Florian Valot created 49 scoring chances from open play in the regular season, the second-highest total in the league.

Projected Lineups

  • Tampa Bay (4-2-3-1) – GK: Matt Pickens; D: Darnell King, Neill Collins, Hunter Gorskie, Zac Portillos; DM: Marcel Schäfer, Martin Vingaard; AM: Georgi Hristov, Joe Cole, Walter Restrepo; F: Sebastian Guenzatti

  • New York (4-2-3-1) – GK: Evan Louro; D: David Najem, Hassan Ndam, Jordan Scarlett, Ethan Kutler; DM: Dan Metzger, Andrew Tinari; AM: Florian Valot, Vincent Bezecourt, Junior Flemmings; F: Stefano Bonomo


  • Tampa Bay – None

  • New York – None



  • AR1: Nick Uranga

  • AR2: Jonathan Bilinksi

  • 4TH: Daniel Gutierrez

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