MLS Saturday: Expansion Austin FC thrives on road

The first-year team made it two wins in a row with a 1-0 victory over reeling Minnesota United, which dropped its third straight game.

Claudio Reyna and Josh Wolff have quietly build a solid first-year team at Austin FC.

The expansion team won its second straight game on the road with a 1-0 win at Minnesota United.

Uruguayan-born Diego Fagundez, who came to Austin after 10 seasons with New England, scored in his second straight game with Austin FC. He scored as many as 13 goals in a season for the Revs, but he's been reborn in Austin after 2019 and 2020 seasons with a combined three goals.

A core of MLS veterans gives Austin FC plenty of experience: Matt Besler (12 seasons with Sporting KC), Nick Lima and Danny Hoesen (four seasons each with San Jose) and Alex Ring (four seasons with NYCFC) along with Fagundez.

The surprise for Austin FC has been Jared Stroud, who set up Fagundez with a cross in the 17th minute. The Colgate product spent two seasons with New York Red Bulls II before graduating to the Red Bulls in 2020.

Wolff said he was not surprised with his Stroud's playmaking from the right wing.

"When I looked at Jared," he said, "those were some of the few things that really stood out. One is his ability to run and stretch the line, obviously he comes from a pressing culture so his pressing is really good. His ability to serve balls, whip balls in early behind the line was really good when we reviewed his footage from the Red Bulls."

Austin FC, which opened with a 2-0 loss at LAFC and 3-1 win at Colorado, will play four more matches on the road before opening at Q2 Stadium against the San Jose Earthquakes on June 19.

"It's always tough," Wolff said. "We know we got [seven-straight road] games but I don't really spend a ton of time talking about being on the road. These are games we have to play, and they happen to be on the road and we're learning more and more about each other every day but we still want to go play the way we play."
1 comment about "MLS Saturday: Expansion Austin FC thrives on road".
  1. Ben Myers, May 2, 2021 at 12:37 p.m.

    Fagundez suffered at New England under its revolving door of head coaches.  Kraft & Co also blocked any move by Fegundez to play overseas.  It's super to see that he is becoming a key part of this new Austin FC team, and he still has some years remaining on his wheels.

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