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Miami FC Lose Preseason Match against Minnesota United FC

February 8, 2020 - United Soccer League Championship (USL) - Miami FC News Release

MELBOURNE, Fla. -- The Miami FC continued their preparations for the 2020 USL Championship season, facing Major League Soccer's Minnesota United FC on Saturday at Titan Soccer Complex on the campus of Easter Florida State College.

The Loons defeated Miami FC 5-0, giving up two goals in the first half and three in the second half.

"Despite the result, these matches are great to test yourself against quality opposition," said Miami FC head coach Nelson Vargas. "It's a great barometer for us to see where we are at and what we all want to aspire to. We knew it was going to be difficult but there were several things as a staff that we were happy with."

An 11th minute goal by Minnesota's newest signing Luis Amarilla found Miami down early in the match. A header at the far post left goalkeeper Mark Pais without any chances, as the Paraguayan was left open.

Similar to the first goal, Minnesota midfielder Jan Gregus found himself close to the top of the box with plenty of space and double their lead in the 24th minute.

Miami FC did create several chances in the first half, but Loons goalkeeper Tyler Miller provided several saves to keep his team up two at the half.

"Even with the lopsieded result, one of the positives I mentioned was the creation of chances," explained Vargas. "We had a clear chance very early in the match and if we capitalized on it we would have been up early on. The difference was they took advantage of their opportunities, but we need to look at this match more like a test to see where we are in our preseason. Again, there were plenty of positives to take from today's performance."

With forward Romario Williams coming on at the half, Miami was able to link up their front three and create space.

Miami's clearest chance of the match came in the 55th minute, when the club's newest addition midfielder Sebastian Velasquez played a through ball to forward Prince Saydee into space. The Liberian was able to get a shot off, but it would be saved by Minnesota goalkeeper Dayne St. Clair.

Despite moving the ball in the second half, Miami FC was unable to get on the scoresheet, while Minnesota capitalized on their chances. The Loons went on to score in the 66th minute (Andrew Booth), with Mason Toye scoring a bracelate in the second half.

"The most important thing is for us to focus on our style of play," said Vargas. "The results are not what's important to us right now. We care more about preparing the team for our first USL Championship match, when the results will matter."

Miami FC continues their preseason on Thursday, February 13, when they face New York City F.C. on the campus of Florida Atlantic University. The match will be open to the public and will kick off at 12 p.m.

Miami FC lineup: GK Mark Pais (Brian Sylvestre 46'); D Lloyd Sam, Hassan Ndam, Jalen Markey, Bah Othello (Janos Löbe 61'); M Tomas Granitto (Lance Rozeboom 46'), Harrison Heath (Lawrence Olum 61'), Brian James; F Prince Saydee (Miguel Gonzalez 61'), Mohamed Thiaw (Romario Williams 46'), Sebastián Velásquez

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