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Rowdies Take On Coastal Cup Rivals

The Basics:
FC Tampa Bay Rowdies (5-7-5, 5th in USL Conference) vs. Miami FC (2-6-9, 5th in NASL Conference)

Sunday, July 25th, 4:00 p.m., George M. Steinbrenner Field

Anheuser-Busch/Pepin Distributing Company Title Night

Family 4-packs are available for this game and include four tickets, four hot dogs, and four small sodas.

This is the third regular season meeting between the teams.

Broadcast Info:
The match will be carried live on www.fctampabay.com.  1010 Sports with Mike Pepper and Winston DuBose will also be broadcasting the game.

What’s at Stake:
An 82nd minute goal by Jeremy Christie seemed to have the Rowdies all three points on July 4th, when Miami FC last visited the Tampa Bay area.  Edward Santeliz scored in the 90th minute to deny the Rowdies victory.  Rivalry matches are always tense, but this matchup should have even more bite.  Halfway through the inaugural Coastal Cup series, both teams are level on two points and the winner of this game could be favorites for the Cup.

Previous Meetings:
Prior to that 1-1 draw on July 4th, the Rowdies had also drawn 1-1 with the Blues on May 1st in Fort Lauderdale.  On June 22, Miami FC defeated FC Tampa Bay 2-1 after extra time in the second round of the U.S. Open Cup.  Miami’s winning goal came via an Abe Thompson penalty kick in the 98th minute.

Individual Notes:
Jonny Steele could be joined in midfield by former Whitecaps and new Rowdie Ricardo Sanchez.  Sanchez was traded to FC Tampa Bay on Tuesday.  Sanchez played in 13 USSF D-II games for the Whitecaps prior to joining FC Tampa Bay.

Paulo Araujo Jr. has continued his steady performances for Miami FC.  The 21-year-old Brazilian has recorded 16 points in 16 USSF D-II games for the Blues this season.  Araujo Jr. also scored four goals in a 10-minute span on June 15 in the Open Cup against the Central Florida Kraze.

Midfielder Stanley Nyazamba has started 13 games for the Rowdies this season but he will be unavailable for this match.  Nyazamba’s yellow card in the 43rd minute of the Thursday night game against Rochester was his fifth of the season, triggering an automatic one-game suspension.

Noteworthy Stat:
Strangely enough, the 82nd minute has been a great minute for the Rowdies against Miami FC.  On May 10, with the Rowdies trailing 1-0, Julian Valentin scored an 82nd minute goal to earn the Rowdies a point.  In the June 22nd Open Cup game, the story was nearly identical.  With the Rowdies trailing 1-0 in the 82nd minute, Yendry Diaz scored the goal that would force extra time.  The streak continued in Tampa on July 4th.  Jeremy Christie scored with an impressive bending shot that was of course in the 82nd minute, giving the home team a late 1-0 advantage.

 
 
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Standings

NASL Conference PLD PTS
Carolina 29 44
Vancouver 29 44
Montreal 29 40
Miami 29 32
AC St Louis 29 29
Baltimore 29 24
USL Conference PLD PTS
Austin 28 53
Rochester 29 51
Portland 29 48
NSC Minnesota 30 40
Puerto Rico 29 36
FC Tampa Bay 29 29