Player Ratings: Memphis 901 1-2 Birmingham Legion
6 goals scored and just 2 conceded against Area Code FC this year
The Miami game was frustrating, largely thanks to goalkeeper Jake McGuire. Fortunately Memphis 901 only has Drew Romig, who is better known for errors than saves. Thus the Legion plan of attack was much more fruitful this time around.
GK: TREVOR SPANGENBERG – 7. No howlers from Trevor this week. He can hardly be blamed for the penalty goal, and made 3 big saves in the game to keep the Legion in it. His passing was dreadful though: 47.8% on 23 attempts, which means he was just booting the ball out of the danger zone.
LB: MOSES MENSAH –7. Moses was used this time as the more advanced of the two fullbacks. That was kind of a false flag, as he ultimately put in just one cross, unsuccessfully. His passing was decent, completing 24 of 32 tries. In defense he won 5 of 10 duels, made 2 tackles, 3 clearances and 5 interceptions.
CB: PHANUEL KAVITA – 8. Uninvolved in the attack for the most part, but solid in all other respects. A creditable 82.1% accurate on 238 passes, 5 of 7 in duels, 2 tackles, 2 clearances.
CB: ALEX CROGNALE – 7. Memphis’ best open play chance was Alex’s rather misguided header. Other than that he was his usual reliable self. He won 4 of 8 duels and logged 2 tackles and 3 clearances. No attacking actions though; 24 of 36 in passing.
RB: JAKE RUFE – 6. As much as the Legion contested it, the handball was the right call. Not sure what Jake was trying to do there. That was the worst of a so-so game. 60% accuracy rate on 25 passes and one unsuccessful cross. Defensively, 3 of 6 in duels, 1 tackle, 1 clearance and 1 interception.
DM: PROSPER KASIM – 8. Officially listed as the left defensive mid, Prosper was more like a central attacking mid in the first half and a right winger in the second, exiting with 9 minutes on the clock. Still, he won 6 of 11 duels and recorded 1 tackle, 1 clearance and 1 interception. In attack, he had 3 shots, all off target, and one unsuccessful cross.
DM: MIKEY LOPEZ – N/A. Losing Mikey in the 39th minute and the handball just seconds later was far and away the worst stretch for the Legin in the game. He hadn’t really done much up to that point other than not blocking Jeremy Kelly’s attempt that forced Trevor’s first save.
LW: PRESTON TABORT-ETAKA – 8. A second straight start for Preston and he showed how useful he can be. Only 1 shot, which was blocked, but he created 2 scoring chances and was constantly in Romig’s face. He was big in defense too: he was in a staggering 24 duels, winning 12, and made 3 tackles, 3 clearances and 1 block.
CAM: ENZO MARTINEZ – 7.5. Enzo had 1 shot on target in the game, not particularly hard for Romig to handle. He was his typical self though and was the channel through which much of the Legion attack flowed.
RW: JUAN AGUDELO – 6.5. Juan had a huge scoring chance but Romig was able to smother the ball before Juan could play it. He ended up with no shots in the game and picked a very silly yellow card deep in second half stoppage time.
FWD: NECO BRETT – 8. A goal and an assist make for a pretty effective outing. But leaving in the 63rd minute after what looked like a pulled hamstring on an uncontested play on that horrendous infield sod was bad news at this stage in the season.
SUB: DIBA NWEGBO – 8. Replacing a defensive player with an attacking early in the game weas an interesting choice, but it worked out brilliantly. After his goal 36 seconds into the second half he returned the favor to Neco Brett less than 5 minutes later with a cheeky chip shot assist. Man of the Match honors go his direction.
SUB: TYLER PASHER – 7. Tyler came on for Neco and is looking pretty much 100%. Good on 9 of 10 passing attempts and 1 shot on target. Expect him to get more minutes in the final two regular season games.
SUB: COLLIN SMITH – N/A. Brought on for Prosper in the 81st minute for obvious extra defensive cover, Collin wasn’t forced into any real defensive plays. Just two passes, both completed.
HC: TOMMY SOEHN – 8. Forced into a major tactical change early, Tommy got this one absolutely right. His team came out for the second totally charged up too, a very welcome sight.