Preview: Austin Bold FC V Rio Grande Valley FC
Austin, TX - Austin Bold FC look to get back to winning ways against Rio Grande Valley FC Toros on Saturday night at Bold Stadium. After two consecutive losses in the 2020 USL Championship Return to Play, Head Coach Marcelo Serrano will want to see a return to form for his side that reached the 2019 USL Championship Playoffs in their inaugural season. Fans may not be allowed in Bold Stadium, but you can stream the match live on ESPN+.
First For The Bold
Forward Billy Forbes scored his first goal for The Bold in last Saturday's 2-4 loss to San Antonio FC. Serrano will be happy to see his new signing opening his account while playing in a less traditional number 9 position. The Turks and Caicos striker has often been used as a winger at previous clubs but seems to strive in his alternate position. In 90 minutes, Forbes created two chances with three shots on target on six total shots. The opportunities created were dangerous. In the 20', Forbes cut inside from the right to hit a powerful left-footed shot outside the box and forcing SAFC goalkeeper Dayne St. Clair into a full-stretch save. Another chance came when Forbes nearly chipped the onrushing St. Clair in the 70', proving that we'll be seeing even more from the forward. "Feels great to score my first goal for The Bold. I'm looking to score more goals and help the team In a big way," said Forbes after the match.
Results Don't Tell the Full Story
Rio Grande Valley FC Toros haven't won a match in 2020, but don't be fooled by their record. Gerson Echeverry's men have been incredibly difficult to break down for opponents. Other than a strange 1-5 loss to LA Galaxy II at H-E-B park to start the season in March, The Toros only allowed a multi-goal game once since the restart and registered an impressive 68.4% success tackle rate. On the offensive side, this RGV team loves taking chances with a total of 61 shots this season. Echeverry's group of talented youngsters is putting themselves in the right positions but haven't been able to convert those chances into goals.
The season restart hasn't gone exactly to plan for The Bold. Two matches at Bold Stadium have ended with zero points. The stop and go nature for Austin due to heightened COVID-19 safety protocols have made it challenging to create a sense of training rhythm for the players. This week, The Bold has finally been given a full week to prepare. After last week's match, midfielder Amobi Okugo spoke on how the players will not use these challenges as excuses, "It was a hard-fought match by the boys. We showed well. Obviously, there were some mistakes that were made. I think we definitely showed well considering all the circumstances. We will not use it as an excuse. We will keep moving forward and use this as motivation. We have a quick turnaround. Hopefully, everyone can stay healthy and get some guys back in the meantime, so we have more subs. We still have a ton of games left, and we can bounce back."
The Youth Movement Continues
This week, Austin Bold FC announced the addition of goalkeepers Zachary Kos and Edward Alonzi on academy contracts for the remainder of the 2020 USL Championship season. Academy contracts allow the pair of sixteen-year-olds to retain eligibility for collegiate play. Both players caught the eye of Bold Assistant Coach Ryan Thompson during their time with Lonestar SC's DA squads. Thompson spoke on his excitement of the new additions, "Edward and Zack are two young and talented goalkeepers who are very passionate about the position and the sport. I'm happy that Austin Bold FC is a place where they can get an opportunity to develop further and refine all the talent they possess." These signings further the club-wide initiative to give promising young players in Austin the ability to train and develop in a professional environment.
Get to know Rio Grande Valley FC Toros by the numbers.
Head Coach: Gerson Echeverry
2020 Record: 0-4-2 (W-L-D)
2020 Group D Standing: 5th (2 PTS)
Top Goalscorer: Taiberson, Luka Prpa, Deshane Beckford, Robert Castellanos (1)
Clean Sheets: 0
Goals Conceded: 11
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