After finally being able to play their first home match on Saturday, Austin FC hit the road again on Wednesday as they face a familiar opponent in Minnesota United FC. The two faced off earlier this year at Allianz Field as Austin secured three points on May 1 thanks to a goal from Diego Fagundez. It was the lone goal in the match as the Verde & Black earned their second victory of the season.
Austin FC Outlook
Austin will be coming off an emotional match when they take the field on Wednesday against the Loons. Josh Wolff’s team played the first home match in Austin FC history on Saturday night against the San Jose Earthquakes as they played to a 0-0 draw at Q2 Stadium.
The clean sheet was the team’s second in their last three matches as Brad Stuver continued his outstanding play, making nine saves to preserve the shutout against the Quakes. A couple of those were in spectacular fashion as the road team pushed to find a winner while Austin did the same on the other end.
While the Verde & Black were unable to find a winner, there were a couple of standout performances on the attacking end. Jon Gallagher was a terror on the left wing, completing five dribbles and creating multiple chances while Tomas Pochettino completed 87% of his passes and created four chances, matching a season high. Austin’s 20 shots were the most they have taken this season.
This will be the first time Austin will play multiple matches in one week and after playing the Loons, ATXFC will head home to take on Columbus Crew SC on Sunday night at Q2 Stadium.
Minnesota’s 1-0 loss at home to Austin in May was part of a four-match losing streak to start their 2021 season. Since then they have been able to earn eight points over their last four matches, including a 1-1 draw on the road against FC Dallas on Saturday night. The Loons sit in 11th place in the Western Conference as they have averaged one point-per-game so far this season, the same mark Austin have accomplished.
The Loons have added multiple attacking options over the course of the first few months of the season and one of them provided the opener in Frisco, Texas on Saturday. Franco Fragapane played his first match for Minnesota over the weekend and scored his first goal in the 36th minute, pouncing on a rebound after a fellow newcomer -- Adrien Hunou -- was able to force FCD ‘keeper Jimmy Maurer into a tough save.
Minnesota have won their last two home matches -- both 1-0 victories -- after dropping their first two matches at Allianz Field.
Probable Minnesota Lineup
(4-2-3-1, R-L) - GK: Tyler Miller; Romain Metanire, Michael Boxall, Bakaye Dibassy, Chase Gasper; Osvaldo Alonso, Wil Trapp; Ethan Finlay, Emanuel Reynoso, Franco Fragapane; Adrien Hunou