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Match Preview: Legion FC at Memphis 901 FC - Saturday, September 4

September 3, 2021 - United Soccer League Championship (USL) - Birmingham Legion FC News Release


Birmingham Legion FC at Memphis 901 FC

Saturday, September 4 - 7:00PM CT Kickoff

AutoZone Park - Memphis, TN

Watch - My68, ESPN+

Stats - Legion FC Match Center

Following a crucial win over Louisville City in the race for the top spot in the Central Division last Saturday at home, Legion FC kept the streak alive with a shutout win at Sporting KC II on Wednesday, thanks to a rocket of a goal from forward Prosper Kasim that was assisted by midfielder Mikey Lopez.

Kasim will look to continue picking up the slack for departed forward Junior Flemmings in the attack, as Flemmings has joined Jamaica this international window for World Cup Qualifiers. Forwards Neco Brett and JJ Williams will join Kasim after both men scored in the win over LouCity. Brett bagged his 12th goal of the season, third-most in the league, and Williams scored the game winner to grab his fourth goal of the year, to go along with three assists.

The backline helped goalkeeper Matt VanOekel earn his sixth shutout of the season Wednesday, thanks to standout play from center backs Alex Crognale and Phanuel Kavita, who are top two on the team in clearances, while left back Ryan James is tops in interceptions, and right back Jonny Dean is first in chances created.

#BHMvMEM part four will serve as the rubber match this season, as the first game went 1-0 to BHM at Legion Field on May 15, the second finished 1-0 to MEM in the Magic City on July 10, and the third was level, 1-1, in TN on August 14.

Memphis comes into the match also on short rest after losing to OKC Energy FC on Wednesday night, 1-0. The home side will look to get back in the win column, with three draws and three losses in its last six games and is hoping to improve its record at AutoZone Park this season, which currently stands at 2-3-2.

Forward Kyle Murphy has been the talisman in the attack, as his 11 goals are tied for fourth most in the USL Championship, but also because only two other players, Michael Salazar (three), and Kadeem Dacres (two) have more than one goal on the season. Dacres also leads the way in assists (three), and chances created (30).

MEM has seen a rotating cast of characters in goal in 2021, with Kyle Morton leading the way in shutouts with two in five appearances. Currently in seventh in the Central Division, but still within touching distance of the fourth and final playoff spot, 901 FC will have all the motivation it can take for this rivalry matchup.

On this week's VIVA Health injury report, Legion FC midfielder Daigo Kobayashi (knee) is still listed as questionable, along with midfielder Bruno Lapa (sports hernia) and midfielder Marcos Ugarte (knee). Defender Freddy Kleemann has been recalled from loan by Austin FC, and forward Junior Flemmings is unavailable for selection while on international duty.

Legion FC wraps up this stretch of road contests looking for revenge in a match at FC Tulsa on Saturday, September 11 at 7:00pm. Fans can tune in to watch the match on My68 or ESPN+ or follow @bhmlegion on twitter for live updates.

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