Previewing The Match: The Miami FC v Jax Armada U-23

The Miami FC host the Jacksonville Armada U-23 in the NPSL Sunshine Conference Semi-Final

Does it feel like we just put this article out a few days ago? You’re not having a case of deja vu, no… wait, yes you are. The Armada return to town for kickoff a mere 94 hours since their previous clash against Miami FC ended. While the last match ended in Miami’s favor, this time it’s for all the marbles. 

All of the marbles, that’s what is at stake in the 2019 NPSL Sunshine Conference Semi-Finals. The Orange and Blue have been on quite a run since their open cup loss to the Florida Soccer Soldiers. During the seven-game winning streak, FC have outscored their opponents 36 to 3. The +33 goal differential over the past seven matches would tops all NPSL conference goal differential standings except for two.

This season has been an all-time low in amounts of games played for the Magic City club. Over the past three years, even when burning out of the open cup, there were more fixtures under their belt. There is no doubt that Paul Dalglish’s side is running like a well-oiled machine, however, the argument can be made that they have yet to be tested. Jacksonville has not shown to be a side that forces Miami to answer the difficult questions. Albeit, do not expect Dalglish to allow his men to overlook this young side.

Keys To A Miami FC Victory

When we published the previous article we were very keen on the entire squad needing minutes in the final regular season match. While we were correct with the notion, it was the execution that surprised. Miami played with a short bench and rested their attacking trio. Miguel Gonzalez, Dylan Mares, and Mohamed Thiaw are unlikely to start on the bench Wednesday night.

Tomas Granitto is pressured by an Armada midfielder. Photo: Orovio Photography
Tomas Granitto is pressured by an Armada midfielder. Photo: Orovio Photography

Just like we discussed on Saturday, an early start is crucial to allow Dalglish to rotate his squad. No true footballer will deny the opportunity to play multiple matches in a week. However, the NPSL’s additional substitutions, risking injury to the aforementioned trio, Ariel Martinez, or Dario Suarez is foolish. The back-line will need to step up again to minimize the work in front of goal keeper Mark Pais. Surely, another goal from Callum Chapman-Page would be appreciated by all.

Prediction

There are no certain victories in any fixture. It does not matter what league or competition you play in, your opponent will always have a puncher’s chance. One bad decision, pass, or foul can send Miami FC into the off-season early. Is Jacksonville worth backing? The 11-1 aggregate scoreline forces us to rationalize that answer as no. Have crazier things happened? Certainly. Miami should see off the young Jaxsons home without much of a challenge.

The Miami FC 4 – 0 Jacksonville Armada U-23

Tickets are still available for Wednesday’s NPSL Sunshine Conference Semi-Final. Click Here To Get Your Tickets Today!

Can’t make the match? Magic City Soccer has you covered. Click Here To Watch The Live Broadcast On MyCujoo!

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