PREVIEW: Greenville Triumph SC at Fort Lauderdale CF

Chris Ashley
Jul 14 · 4 min read
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(Photo by: Brittany Hildreth)

It has been a minute.

Seriously, 2020 has been quite a ride thus far. And while we are not done with the pandemic and turmoil that have radically changed our reality over the last several months, soccer is back.

I have mixed feelings about all of this if I’m being completely transparent. On one hand, I’m ecstatic to have back a piece of normalcy. I’m elated to be able to tune in to the sport I love, the teams I love, and the players I love watching.

But, I’m also concerned. At what risk, and potentially price, are we getting these things back? It is for sure a delicate balance between the lives and livelihoods of everyone involved and I do not pretend to understand all of the nuances of this reality.

So, for now, I will do my best to help support this organization the best way I know how: with my money and my talents. And I encourage everyone else to do so as well.

If you have some extra cash to spend, buy some merch. Tune in to the matches on ESPN+. Support the Triumph sponsors and partners (and tell them you are doing so because they support the Triumph). Tweet, like, and comment on social media. Show the team and the players all the love.

Now, with all of that out of the way, we turn our focus to this Saturday. The Greenville Triumph travel to south Florida to help kickoff the delayed USL League One season against expansion side Fort Lauderdale CF. What should you watch for? Who will win? Will FLCF even be able to field a full team? Let’s break it all down.

What to Watch For:

  • Year Two Begins: Many experts and pundits were high on Greenville coming into the 2020 season. But things have changed, dramatically. The delayed start does add a unique element to this season and the chemistry and experience gap may have been diminished with this long delay. Or it may not have been. It’s impossible to know what 2020 is going to look like, but week one should go a long way to start gaining some clarity about where this team sits.

Key Players for Fort Lauderdale CF:

  • Ricky Lopez-Espin— Forward: Lopez-Espin is a name that should be plenty familiar to Triumph fans. He was the first player to ever score a goal at Legacy Early Field in the inaugural home opener while playing for Lansing Ignite. Lopez-Espin is a very good goal scorer and could keep the herons in the match if he is on his game. But, Ricky is also notoriously impulsive and his mouth has gotten him into trouble in the past. I expect the Triumph back line to be a real pain point for Ricky in this opening match.

The CASHINHO “Take It To The Bank” Prediction:

The reality is that it is almost impossible to predict a match like this. Most of these players have not played a competitive match in 8–9 months. Fort Lauderdale is a brand new expansion side with almost no information out there about them. Will they approach this league like Orlando City B and Toronto FC II or like North Texas SC?

All things considered, I think this type of wild card match favors the team with history and chemistry at its core. I also think a dominating defense is going to prove to be kryptonite for the herons. Triumph win BIG here.

Greenville Triumph SC: 3— Fort Lauderdale CF: 0

Match Info:

The match will take place at Lockhart Stadium in Fort Lauderdale, FL at 8:00pm EST on Saturday July 18, 2020. The game will be available on ESPN+ in the US and YouTube internationally.

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Make sure you follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and subscribe to the podcast for all the latest Greenville Soccer news.

GVLSoccer

Covering Soccer in Upstate SC and Beyond

Chris Ashley

Written by

Covering Greenville soccer through both the written and spoken word. Check out Soccer ’n’ Sweet Tea and Yeah, THAT Soccer Show.

GVLSoccer

GVLSoccer

Covering Soccer in Upstate SC and Beyond

Chris Ashley

Written by

Covering Greenville soccer through both the written and spoken word. Check out Soccer ’n’ Sweet Tea and Yeah, THAT Soccer Show.

GVLSoccer

GVLSoccer

Covering Soccer in Upstate SC and Beyond

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