Player Ratings: Memphis 901 2-4 Birmingham Legion
Are they singing the blues on Beale Street?
It’s been so long since this game I must admit to almost having forgotten how the team played. But hey, it was Area Code FC. SOTM and all that. We have to rub it in, even if a bit delayed.
GK: MATT VAN OEKEL – 7. There wasn’t much MVO could do about the 2 goals. Memphis only had 2 other shots on goal, though, and Matt stopped them both. His passing was even worse than normal: a lowly 30% on 20 passes.
LB: MIKEY LOPEZ – 7.5. Other than the yellow card for a push in the back to stop a counter attack, Mikey had another solid game. Good on 32 of 40 passes (no crosses though), he also had 2 shots (both off target). Defensively, he won just 5 of 12 duels, but made 4 tackles, 1 clearance and 3 interceptions.
CB: PHANUEL KAVITA – 8. The Legion’s center back duo proved instrumental in this game, and not just in protecting the goal. Alex scored, but it was Phanny who drew the attention on corner kicks getting right into Trey Muse’s face. He had only 3 duels, winning 2, and made 1 tackle, 5 clearances and 3 interceptions. Oh, and 77.3% accuracy on 22 passes.
CB: ALEX CROGNALE – 9. His first goal of the season came off his head, naturally, but from a good 12 yards out. Poor marking by Memphis. He connected on 16 of 22 passes, won 3 of 7 duels, made 1 tackle, 6 clearances and 1 interception for a very good evening’s work.
RB: JONNY DEAN – 8. Jonny’s speed got the Memphis left side totally gassed, and he generally ran rings around them. 63.9% accurate on 36 passes, including connecting on 1 of his 2 crosses. He had no shots but created 2 scoring chances. On defense, he won 3 of 5 duels, and recorded 2 tackles, 3 clearances and 2 interceptions.
LW: ANDERSON ASIEDU – 8. Back in the starting lineup, Little Tank was deployed in a more attacking role than normal. He made the best of it, drawing the foul for the opening PK goal, taking 3 shots (1 on, 1 off and 1 blocked). He also attempted 1 cross and created 2 chances. He was even offside twice.
RM: ZACH HERIVAUX – 8. Zach was the defensive mid in what was kinda sorta a 4-4-2 diamond. He did get in 1 shot on target, though, and also fed Enzo for Marlon’s goal. Defensively he won only 4 of 11 duels, which seems very low, but also made 2 tackles, 2 clearances and 2 intereceptions.
LM: BRUNO LAPA – 8. 90% accurate on 30 passes, Bruno got the assist on Alex’s goal from the corner spot, pumping in a total of 6 crosses (4 unsuccessful). He had 2 shots blocked, but generated 3 chances in a very strong 70-minute performance. Again.
RW: MARLON SANTOS – 8. Marlon got a yellow card, but I thought it was very soft; the incident looked more like an unfortunate tangle of feet with Aaron Molly to me. His game-winning goal was a beautiful counter attack score and he later thanked Enzo for his assist with an assist of his own. His only other shot was also on target. A great 78 minutes.
FWD: ENZO MARTINEZ – 9. For some reason, the official stats do not credit Enzo with the assist on Marlon’s score, which is crazy. His own goal was similarly a counter attack opportunity. Amazingly, that was his only shot in the game. His fence-jumping celebration with his daughter gets him a ton of extra credit and contributes to his Man of the Match award.
FWD: JUAN AGUDELO – 8. Juan didn’t pump in a bunch of shots this time. In fact. Other than the calmly taken PK, he only had one other shot, which was blocked. His passing was immaculate though, missing only 1 of 16 passes. Taken off after 70 minutes to rest that iffy knee.
SUB: RYAN JAMES – 8. 21 official minutes for Ryan in place of Bruno and he played dual defensive and attacking roles. He won both his duels, blocked 1 shot and had 1 interception. He also went 5 of 7 in passing, had a shot of his own blocked and created 2 chances.
SUB: SADIK BALARABE – 6. Sadik came on for Juan with the game already in hand, so he was there largely to keep the Memphis defense honest. He did get 1 shot in, but off frame, and connected on only 1 of 4 passes, and lost all 4 of his duels. Not such a great outing really.
SUB: JAKE RUFE – 7. 12 official minutes for Jake, in which he hung back deep. Doing so resulted in 2 clearances. He did what was needed.
HC: TOMMY SOEHN – 8. Another lineup and formation change for Tommy after the midweek debacle. Whatever he saw in Memphis’ play was right on the money, as his team dominated all game.