Looking back at Act One of the #MagicCityClasico, I want to apologize for sounding like a complete idiot regarding the match preview. Miami FC 2 stumbled out of the gates and Miami United looked to be the team that was full of professional experience. Perhaps things will change Saturday as MFC 2 host United at St. Thomas University. Let’s take a look at what both teams need to do in Act Two in order to walk away with all of the points.
I questioned whether Miami United would be able to handle the firepower of Miami FC’s attack before the match last week. Miami United passed the test with flying colors for about 70 minutes. It wasn’t until the late stages of the game where United began to lose some composure in the backline and giving Miami FC 2 some opportunities.
While the defense wasn’t tested heavily until late, clogging the midfield proved to be effective in hamstringing the MFC 2 attack. Very rarely was MFC 2 able to build from the back, something that became a hallmark of their play during the first two seasons. The midfield was pressed consistently and often left defenders with no choice other than to bypass play through an aerial effort.
United’s pace proved to be unmatched for the majority of the match. 19 year old, Gabrielle Privitera, dashed through Miami’s defense on multiple occasions, including a 50 yard run leading to the goal scored by Victor Pelae. Pelae and Tomas Granitto will have to have strong efforts again for United to steal all three points from the second meeting.
Miami FC 2:
Everything has to change for the Blues if they want to walk out of the match with the upper hand for the rest of the 2018 NPSL season. Miami FC 2 need to strengthen the midfield play and allow their roster to feel comfortable in the positions they are tasked with. Gone are the days of being able to watch Poku and Richie Ryan carve out opportunities for other players.
Manny Gonzalez and Dylan Mares have to strategically link play between the defense and the forwards using their professional experience against the younger United squad. Finding Don Smart and Coy Craft on the wings will be essential in breaking down the United defense and allowing for chances for the Blue’s strikers.
Speaking of the number nine role, Vincenzo Rennella and Jaime Chavez need to find a way to be in this game early. The pair are arguably the best strikers in the NPSL Sunshine Conference and their skill will single handedly decide games this season. Chavez was able to steal a point for MFC2 in the last match, Paul Dalglish & Company will hope the pair can corral all three points in a less stressful manner.
Act one of the #MagicCityClasico proved that there are still chemistry issues with this new look Miami FC 2 squad. Although the back line was much unchanged, the midfield was inept against a strong United pressure. The first MFC 2 chance didn’t even come for 22 minutes in the match!
There could be a huge separation in the skill set of these two teams but it’s on Paul Dalglish to get the most out of his players. United are no strangers to punching above their weight class so ruling out a repeat performance by the Pink & Black would be foolish. However, if Rennella and Chavez are making runs at the defense for a full match, it could decide the match.
Miami FC 2 2–2 Miami United FC