Richmond Kickers vs. Tampa Bay Rowdies
Saturday, June 17, 7 p.m. ET.
City Stadium, Richmond, Virginia
Follow us for live updates on Twitter @RowdiesGameday
Head to Five Bucks Drinkery on Central Avenue in St. Petersburg to watch with other Rowdies fans and enjoy drink specials during the match.
Richmond Kickers: 2-4-7 (W-T-L), 10 points, 15th place
Tampa Bay: 6-5-3 (W-T-L), 23 points, 2nd place
Tampa Bay sits in second place in the USL’s Eastern Conference despite a four-game winless streak heading into this weekend’s visit to Richmond. e Rowdies opened the season with three consecutive wins, but have posted a record of just 3-5-3 (W-T-L) since then.
This match is the first of a three-game road trip for the Rowdies, who will go on to play in Pittsburgh on Thursday, June 22 and then in Charleston on Saturday, July 1. By the time this stretch of games is over, the Rowdies will have played seven of their last 10 USL matches away from home.
Bulgarian forward Georgi Hristov leads the Rowdies in scoring with six goals this season. Since signing with Tampa Bay in 2013, he is the Rowdies’ Modern Era leader in goals (44) and appearances (126.) Hristov watched the Rowdies’ 1-1 draw vs Rochester last weekend from the stands while he served a one-game suspension for yellow card accumulation. He is eligible to return tonight.
Midfielder Michael Nanchoff, the Rowdies’ assist leader with four, will miss this match due to a one-game suspension for yellow card accumulation. This is the Rowdies’ fourth-straight match with a player suspended due to yellow card accumulation, following Damion Lowe, Darnell King and Georgi Hristov.
Tampa Bay has the third-highest scoring offense in the Eastern Conference with 20 goals this year, compared to just eight for Richmond. The Rowdies are also the third-best scoring defense in the East, having conceded only 12 goals in 14 matches. Tampa Bay’s goal differential of +7 is second-best, just behind Charleston’s +8.
Midfielder Justin Chavez remains sidelined by a toe injury sustained in Toronto on May 19.
Richmond fell into last place in the Eastern Conference when Toronto FC II beat Orlando City B on Wednesday afternoon to leapfrog above the Kickers. The Kickers have picked up 10 points from their first 13 games heading into this match.
The Kickers’ biggest flaw this season has been a lot of scoring output with just eight goals as a team so far in 2017. D.C. United loanee Alhaji Kamara leads Richmond with four goals this season, but Kamara is one of only four players to score this year.
Richmond announced the signing of forward Franck Tayou on Friday morning to help address the issue. Tayou scored five goals in 17 appearances for San Antonio FC last season.