FC Miami City came into Wednesday’s match with a point to prove in the PDL season. Dropping points due to costly errors against the Lakeland Tropics in their previous outing, City needed a strong showing to bounce back in their 2nd game of the season. Boasting a roster of local collegiate talent and international players, City playoffs chances look slim in a conference they should be contending in.
The match started with City getting most of the possession and the best chances at goal. In the 15th minute, Hamza Mourchid was released on a clever ball that allowed him into space. His shot would slip past the SIMA goalkeeper but the assistant referee ruled him offside and we remained scoreless. Not long after, City went back on the attack earning a free kick in a dangerous area. Dylan Hauss would find Rassambek Akhmatov but his header would be off target.
In the 36th minute, City would get yet another chance to open the scoring. Bryan Perea failed to control a ball delivered to him in the box and was forced to take a shot across the mouth of goal that narrowly missed the back post. Both teams would go into the half scoreless as the wind began to pick up at Tropical Park.
SIMA came out of the gate in the second half looking to get more opportunities better than a lone pedestrian effort. Miami City’s defense, which is still missing PDL Top-50 Kevin Coiffic, proved more than effective to stifle all of SIMA’s chances. SIMA would fail to register a shot on target in the first 20 minutes of the second half despite earning a corner and multiple free kicks right outside the technical area.
In the 69th minute, City would strike first. Akhmatov would find a streaking Kevin Borges down the right flank. Borges would fire in a cross that was misplayed by the SIMA centreback and allowed Mehdi Boncoeur to wind up and fire a volley into the back of the net. The game would continue to open as both teams traded chances and possession time.
In the 83rd minute, the SIMA Aguilas would begin to come alive. City’s defense would be tested as SIMA whipped in a ground cross that found its way on to the penalty spot. The shot would be fanned on by the SIMA striker and City would clear. Perhaps the Aguilas manager is a fan of Manchester United, because it was quite a display during “Fergie-time”.
In the 91st minute, SIMA’s Sami Guediri was able to collect a pass just outside of City’s technical area. After opening up a bit of space for his left foot, Guediri’s blast would beat an outstretched Hugo Fauroux to bring SIMA’s level. In the 94th minute, a rash challenge by City just outside their own technical area would result in a yellow card to Bradley Fountain. SIMA would earn a free kick from 25 yards, with Rafael Santos standing over it. His effort would find top bins, leaving Fauroux flailing and unable to make the save.
City will have ten days to regroup after two heartbreaking losses to begin their 2018 PDL Campaign. Up next for City is North County United Saturday June 2nd at Tropical Park. The game is scheduled to kick off at 6 PM and admission is free to the public.