United Fall To RailHawks 3-2
Minnesota United FC fell victim to a late winner by the Carolina RailHawks at the Hawks nest of Wake Med Park in Cary, North Carolina. After scoring two goals early, United fall to a 3-2 defeat.
There is a saying that 2-0 is the most dangerous score in soccer, and this match has done much to affirm that saying. United went up by two goals early, the Italian with a powder keg of a foot, Simone Bracalello hit a low driving shot from outside of the box to take United into the lead. A mere six minutes later Pablo Campos scored from a slick volley, after a eighty-yard punt downfield from Matt VanOekel in goal.
With a two goal cushion, United sat back with ten men behind the ball and allowed Carolina’s dangerous trio in attack to threaten. This would ultimately be their demise as Carolina left it late, but ultimately decisive. United gave away a penalty in the first half, but still went into the break on top.
A change of tactics in the second half showed Coach Manny Lagos’s desire to hold what they had. Slowing down the game with substitutions such as the experience head of Aaron Pitchkolan, seemed to work for a while, as Takada was also solid in the center of the park, but it was Carolina’s desire to regain first place that dragged them back into contention.
Two goals in quick succession from the Leagues top striker, Brian Shriver in the 86th, and 89th, proved the dagger in the heart for United, as the tables ironically turned, now on the receiving end of a last minute winner, contrasted to Campos’s stoppage time winner against the Strikers of Ft. Lauderdale a fortnight ago. RailHawks Coach Colin Clarke acknowledged his teams performance and their determination to get the points.
“In the second half, we continue to pass the ball well as we did and created more chances and got the goals we needed. We deserved to win today we were the better team.”
With the loss tonight, and the Tampa Bay Rowdies win over the Atlanta Silverbacks, United are leapfrogged by the Rowdies and sit in fourth place on fourteen points. Carolina regains first place from the Silverbacks, and for now hold top spot in the NASL. With the pattern of league results continuing to be as consistant as Minnesota’s weather patterns, anything is possible when it comes to results and no team should get too comfortable in their current league place.
United are not out of contention, and to quote former Tottenham Manager Bill Nicholson, winner of UEFA Cup, and the European Cup Winners’ Cup:
“It is better to fail aiming high than to succeed aiming low.”And just like the Spurs, Minnesota United FC, “have set their sights very high, so high in fact that even failure will have in it an echo of glory.”
Stay tuned for next weeks Loon Call when United face FC Edmonton Sunday, June 30.
88′ Brian Shriver – CRH
86′ Brian Shriver – CRH
25′ Floyd Franks (Penalty) – CRH
10′ Pablo Campos – MNU
4′ Simone Bracalello – MNU
64′ Pablo Campos (YC) – MNU
53′ Floyd Franks (YC) – CRH
Minnesota United FC Starting XI
GK Matt VanOekel, D Justin Davis; Cristiano Dias; D Brian Kallman; D Kyle Altman ( D Kevin Friedland 45′ ); M Kentaro Takada; M Bryan Arguez( F Travis Wall 80′); M Miguel Ibarra; F Simone Bracalello; F Pablo Campos; F Max Griffin ( M/D Aaron Pitchkolan 62′)
Minnesota Unused Substitutes: M Michael Reed; M Geison Moura; F Etienne Barbara
Carolina RailHawks Starting XI
GK Akira Fitzgerald ; D Kupono Low; D Paul Hamilton; D Kevin Rutkiewicz; D Jordan Graye; M Floyd Franks; M Austin Da Luz; M Nick Millington(F Ciaran O’Brien 84′); M Cesar Elizondo(D Austen King 90′), F Brian Shriver; F Zack Schilawski(F Brian Ackley 73′)
Carolina Unused Substitutes: GK Tim Murray; D Eddie Ababio; D Justin Willis; M Jonathan Greenfield
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