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Preview: Nashville SC v Louisville City

Updated: Oct 8, 2019

Nashville SC are back in action after their 0-2 win on the road over Loudoun United on September 28th. While Nashville was off over the weekend, they did see some results go their way in the east. The final run in for the regular season continues tomorrow night and this is how we see things breaking down.

NASHVILLE SC


During the past 7 days, Nashville SC saw several teams drop points, leaving them in control of their destiny for a 2nd place finish. A win on Tuesday will see them pull within one point of Pittsburgh Riverhounds at the top of Eastern Conference.


Last Saturday's match against Loudoun United saw the long awaited return of Derrick Jones to the field. He came on in the 82nd minute and played well after coming off such a long lay off (122 days since his last match). Aside from the Michael Reed injury, Nashville is heading toward the post season with a healthy roster. This will allow Head Coach Gary Smith to ensure that they have a starting 11 that is fresh and in form.

Last weekend, Smith continued with his 4-2-3-1 formation that would at times transition to a 3-5-2. Ken Tribbett's questionable status on the injury report could hinder than flexibility. If Smith goes with the 4-2-3-1 formation, it wouldn't be a surprise to see Derrick Jones get a start, although there's a good chance Smith uses a 3-5-2 with Akinyode and LaGrassa together in midfield.


Daniel Ríos got back to his goal scoring ways against Loudoun United and I expect to see him continue to start against Louisville City with Lebo Moloto and Roppa Mensah out on the wing. I would expect to see Moloto drift in to the middle at times to create chances and allow the fullback to overlap.


Derrick Jones made his return on the field against Loudoun United when he came on as a sub in the 82nd minute. I expect to finally see him get his first start since the injury. He will sit alongside Ken Tribbett and be tasked with the challenge of keeping Louisville City midfielder Napo Matsoso quiet.


When Nashville played Louisville back in July, it was in the midst of Ken Tribbett's injury and Nashville's worst defensive run of the season. Nashville played a back three of Justin Davis, Bradley Bourgeois, and Liam Doyle. On Tuesday, I expect to see Forrest Lasso and Jimmy Ockford partner back up at centerback. As mentioned above, Nashville will look to transition to a 3-5-2 at times and the inclusion of Taylor Washington and Darnell King will ensure that there is plenty of width when needed.


INJURY REPORT


LOUISVILLE CITY FC


Nashville last played Louisville City on July 6th, losing that match 2-1. Nashville comes in to this game with a new look defense after the additions of Forrest Lasso and Jimmy Ockford. The new defense will come up against a Louisville City offense that is averaging just under 2 goals a game and unbeaten in the last 5 games.


Much like Nashville, this match has playoff implications for Louisville City. They currently sit in 5th place on 54 points, just 3 points behind Tampa Bay in 4th Place. A win tomorrow would put them level but behind on goal difference, while a loss could all but eliminate them from contention for a top four spot.

Head coach John Hackworth heavily favors the 4-3-3/ 4-2-3-1 formation. Hackworth will look to continue to capitalize on their success with that formation and I expect that we see an unchanged lineup from their 0-1 win away to STL FC.


Nepo Matsoso comes in to this game on a hot streak having scored 4 goals in the past 4 games. Matsoso and Magnus Rasmussen will be the primary goal threats, along with the looming spectre of Luke Spencer coming off the bench. Nashville will also need to keep an eye on Oscar Jimenez as he will look to bomb forward down the left hand side and put balls in to the box.

PREDICTIONS


Ben Wright

Score: Nashville 2 - 1 Louisville City

Scorers: Daniel Ríos, Cameron Lancaster

MOTM: Ropapa Mensah

Bold Prediction: Ropapa Mensah provides the assist for both of Nashville's goals


Andy Simmons

Score: Nashville 1 - 0 Louisville City

Scorers: Alan Winn

MOTM: Alan Winn

Bold Prediction: Alan Winn comes on as a sub and provides the game WINNer. (Direct all complaints of this bad pun here)


Jonathan Slape

Score: Nashville 2 - 1 Louisville City

Scorers: Daniel Ríos, Matt LaGrassa

MOTM: Derrick Jones

Bold Prediction: Matt LaGrassa grabs a late game winner and Derrick Jones puts in a MOTM performance with 8 interceptions.

John Sloop

Score: Nashville 2 - 0 Louisville City

Scorers: Daniel Ríos, Ropapa Mensah

MOTM: Daniel Ríos

Bold Prediction: Nashville SC has 8 Shots on target


Davey Shephard

Score: Nashville 1 - 0 Louisville City

Scorers: Daniel Ríos

MOTM: Matt Pickens

Bold Prediction: Matt Pickens comes up with a SOTW candidate to keep the clean sheet

Have a prediction for this week's match? Vote in our Fearless Forecast!



MATCH INFO

Date: Tuesday, 10/08/19

Time: 7:00 PM, First Tennessee Park, Nashville Tennessee

TV: MyTV30

Stream: ESPN+

Radio: 94.9 The Game 2 (English)

Forecast: 77°/56°. Partly Cloudy. 10% chance of rain. 60% humidity.