Miami United escape with a draw against Jacksonville Armada

Miami United FC warms up before its game against Jacksonville Armada on June 14, 2018. Photo by Drew Housman.

Miami United and Jacksonville Armada seemed content to match Gucci Mane’s Lemonade on Wednesday: It was all yellow everything. In a classic NPSL scrappy match that got out of hand, yellows were being tossed around left and right. But Miami United clawed back and drew the match, 1-1.

Armada had the clear advantage in this match on paper. Miami was missing top goal scorer David Ochoa, who was injured in a U.S. Open Cup match against Orlando City SC. Also missing from United’s match was midfielder Nicolás Gorobsov, who has left the club to continue his career in Argentina. Tomás Granitto was missing from the lineup also due to a red-card suspension and Gabrielle Privitera was unavailable due to an injury.

Despite a lesser squad from the boys in Hialeah, they put up a fight in the first half. United did a great job with possession and playing long balls into the attacking group. There weren’t many chances on net but a flurry of action in the midfield with Armada accumulating three yellow cards and United getting one of their own. Cue the 45th minute, when the recklessness that can be synonymous with the fourth division appeared. Miami’s Diego Resquin was sent off with a red card. As an Armada player was down Resquin sprinted across the field and stepped on the Armada player which prompted a deserved immediate ejection.

Second Half

After the start of the second half it only took Jacksonville twelve minutes to capitalize being up a man. Joshua Castellanos netted a beast of a goal in the 57th minute. As we have seen before in the NPSL, this have may led to a boost in confidence that led the Armada off the attack. Quickly Miami pounced on the lack of effort and attacked the box in the 64th minute, which led to some shoving and Armada player Michael Melvin getting a straight red which leveled the competition.

Once this match was back to ten men, Miami had the boost of confidence which led to some quality possessions but with the Armada countering at every opportunity possible. After another flurry of yellows and a stoppage of play, Shelton Shamar worked his way down the right wing and scored a screamer for United, knotting the game at one a piece.

It seemed like at this point Jacksonville was content with the draw but United kept pushing for a winner. Shamar would have more opportunities in the final minutes but could not convert. United ended up escaping with a draw which they seemed happy with being down a man for an extended period and dealing with roster issues. This match had all the making of what could easily be a heated NPSL Sunshine Conference playoff game.

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