Al Lang Stadium hosts the Atlanta Silverbacks for the first time this season as the Tampa Bay Rowdies hope to return to winning ways after a 3-3 draw with the Carolina RailHawks ended a three-match winning streak. The Rowdies will have to make do without Head Coach Ricky Hill, who was dismissed from the touchline at the match in Carolina.
Saturday’s hosts are the hottest team in the league right now. Tampa Bay is undefeated in the last four matches, and has picked up 22 points from their last nine fixtures. The Rowdies earned a hard-fought point last weekend after a dramatic comeback from two goals down to tie the match at three goals apiece in extra time. Luke Mulholland was directly involved in all three goals, including delivering the corner kick for Takuya Yamada to score the winner shortly after Ray Burse denied Mike Ambersley from the penalty spot.
The Silverbacks are also coming into this match in a high note. The team defeated the Fort Lauderdale Strikers by a score of 4-2 at Atlanta Silverbacks Park Saturday night for just team’s fourth win of the season. Offensive Player of the Week Pedro Mendes scored twice, Matt Horth grapped his sixth of the season, and Borfor Carr stunned everyone including Matt Glaeser with an immaculate game-winner from well outside the box.
The last time the teams played, the Rowdies left Atlanta Silverbacks Park with the full three points. Daniel Antoniuk had a brace for Tampa Bay, as did Shane Moroney, who scored both of Atlanta’s goals on either side of Mike Ambersley’s eventual game-winner.
Both teams will need to keep focus for the full 90 minutes in this one. The Rowdies’ last two goals in the comeback against Carolina highlighted their ability to score late. The pair was their tenth and eleventh goals of the season to come in the final ten minutes of a match. While Atlanta isn’t nearly as dangerous as Tampa Bay in the closing stages of the match, two of their three late goals this season came against the Rowdies.
Tampa Bay Rowdies vs. Atlanta Silverbacks
Saturday, August 11, 2012— 7:30 P.M. EDT
Al Lang Stadium
St. Petersburg, FL
Webcast: NASL on ustream
2012 Series: Tampa Bay, 1-1-0, 4 points
2011 Series: Tampa Bay, 2-1-1, 7 points
Tampa Bay Atlanta
Head Coach Ricky Hill Eric Wynalda
2012 Records 3rd: 10-4-6, 34 points 8th: 4-5-11, 17 points
Last Five Games L W W W T W W L L W
Goals Leader Daniel Antoniuk (6) Matt Horth (6)
Tsuyoshi Yoshitake (6) Reinaldo Navia (6)
Assists Leader Mike Ambersley (8) Ciaran O’Brien (4)
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