[USL PRO: Week 2]Preki's Sacramento Republic FC makes its USL PRO debut when it travels to LA Galaxy II on Saturday night. Defending champion Orlando City opens at its temporary home, the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, as its welcomes Pittsburgh, another of the four teams playing their 2014 openers.
Dayton Dutch Lions 2014:
The Lions, who claimed the last playoff berth last season with a 10-8-8 record, hired Dutch coachSid van Druenen from their women's program to take over for Patrick Bal, who left for a coaching position in Thailand.The Lions have signed three Brazilians -- defender Matheus and forwards Jackson BeckhamandGuilherme -- with European experience and added five players from the Columbus Crew, including midfielder Kevan George and forward Ryan Finley, who both have MLS experience.
COACH:Sid van Druenen. STADIUM: Beavercreek Stadium (capacity: 5,000).
MLS PARTNER:Columbus Crew.MLS LOAN PLAYERS:Ryan Finley, Kevan George, Ross Friedman, Matt Walker, Brad Stuver.
Pittsburgh Riverhounds 2014:
Despite their Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing, the Riverhounds are continuing with the 2014 season. Indeed, they should be contenders with a serious upgrade from a team that already returns the league's top 1-2 punch in Jose Angulo, the 2013 USL Pro MVP with 15 goals, and Matt Dallman, who set a USL PRO record with 12 assists in 2013, and second-team all-league defender Andrew Marshall. New signings include former MLS striker Joseph Ngwenyafrom Richmond, Danny Earls from Rochester, Brian Fekete from Orlando City, Anthony Obodai from FC Phoenix and former Fulham forward Collins John, as well as three loan players from the Houston Dynamo.
COACH:Justin Evans. STADIUM: Highmark Stadium (capacity: 3,500).
MLS PARTNER:Houston Dynamo.MLS LOAN PLAYERS: Anthony Arena, Jason Johnson, Bryan Salazar.
Richmond Kickers 2014:
The Kickers won the 2013 regular-season title, opening with a league-record 22-game unbeaten streak. They lost a pair of all-league picks -- Ngwenya to Pittsburgh and Andrew Dykstra, who returned to D.C. United -- but first-team all-league defenders Henry Kalungi and William Yombyreturn. To replace Dykstra in goal,Joe Willis arrives from D.C. United along with three other loan players. George Davis IV, a second-team all-league pick with the LA Blues, will boost the attack, as will the return of all-time leading scorer Matthew Delicate, who was convinced to play one more season.
COACH:Leigh Cowlishaw. STADIUM: City Stadium (capacity: 22,000).
MLS PARTNER:D.C. United.MLS LOAN PLAYERS: Joe Willis, Michael Seaton Jalen Robinson, Cristiano Francois.
Sacramento Republic FC 2014:
Expansion Republic FC is shaping up to be a big success in Sacramento. It has sold more than 5,000 season tickets and in June will move into the renovated Cal Expo, its permanent home. Head coach Preki, who worked in MLS with Chivas USA and Toronto FC, has brought in former Chivas USA and Toronto FC forward Justin Braun and midfielder Rodrigo Lopez, who played with the LA Blues in 2013.
COACH:Preki. STADIUM: Cal Expo (capacity: 8,000).
MLS PARTNERS:Portland Timbers, San Jose Earthquakes.MLS LOAN PLAYERS: Bryan Gallego, Jake Gleeson, Aaron Long, Mike Fucito.
USL PRO, Week 2 Schedule:
Saturday, March 29
Charleston vs. Richmond
Orlando City vs. Pittsburgh
LA Galaxy II vs. Sacramento
Sunday, March 30
New York Red Bulls Reserves vs. Dayton
Streaming: USL PRO YouTube | NSCAATV
USL PRO, Standings:
PTS TEAM W-L-T GF/GA
3 LA Galaxy II 0-0-0 0/0
1 Charleston 0-0-1 1/1
1 Orlando City 0-0-1 1/1
0 Orange County 0-1-0 1/3
0 Arizona Utd. 0-0-0 0/0
0 Dayton 0-0-0 0/0
0 Charlotte 0-0-0 0/0
0 Harrisburg 0-0-0 0/0
0 OKC Energy 0-0-0 0/0
0 Pittsburgh 0-0-0 0/0
0 Richmond 0-0-0 0/0
0 Rochester 0-0-0 0/0
0 Sacramento 0-0-0 0/0
0 Wilmington 0-0-0 0/0