Saint Louis FC

Saint Louis FC Heads To Las Vegas To Take On The Lights Saturday Night

Saint Louis FC Takes On An Interesting Las Vegas Lights Club Saturday Night In Sin City

Saint Louis FC is on the road this weekend in Las Vegas to take on the Las Vegas Lights Saturday night.

Saturday night’s match will again force St. Louis fans to stay up a little late. Kick-off is set for 8 pm in Las Vegas (10 pm CST) and the match will air live on KPLR 11 as well as on the ESPN+ streaming service.

Saint Louis FC is 5-5-7 on the season for 22 points. Las Vegas Lights FC is 4-6-5 on the season for 17 points. The clubs stand in 11th and 12th place on the USL West table, respectively.

Scroll down for more on Saturday’s match, a couple podcasts to listen to, why the Las Vegas club is definitely a Las Vegas club and more.

The Chupacabras return to St. Louis and Toyota Stadium on July 14th.

Saint Louis FC takes on Las Vegas Lights FC Saturday in Las Vegas.

Saint Louis FC takes on Las Vegas Lights FC Saturday in Las Vegas.

Last Time Out

4,284 fans showed up at Toyota Stadium last Saturday for a match between Saint Louis FC and Rio Grande Valley FC. Unfortunately, they weren’t exactly treated to a great match. STLFC did get a point with the 0-0 draw, however.

While temperatures in St. Louis were around 95 degrees at kickoff, Las Vegas and Tulsa played to an exciting 2-2 draw with a weather delay that saw heavy rains in Tulsa.

Las Vegas Is Definitely A Las Vegas Team

Flavor Flac at a Las Vegas Lights FC match. Photo courtesy Las Vegas Lights FC

Flavor Flav at a Las Vegas Lights FC match. Photo courtesy Las Vegas Lights FC

It’s definitely obvious that Las Vegas Lights FC is a Las Vegas club.

If the team scores three goals in a match and wins, Plaza Hotel & Casino gives each Lights player $100 in chips to gamble with.

The club’s technical director, Jose Luis Sánchez Sola “Chelís”, was suspended for eight games last month after an incident with a fan in Phoenix. The suspension came after he was suspended seven games back in May for his finger making contact with an official. That suspension was dropped to four games after an appeal. The former coach of Chivas USA is an entertainer fit for a Las Vegas residency. While Chelís serves as the club’s technical director his son, Isidro Sánchez, is the team’s head coach.

The team also takes team pictures with llamas, has an emoji strategically places on the inside of its jerseys and Flavor Flav has been known to show up at matches, clock and all.

Las Vegas Lights FC Has Scored A Lot Lately, And Conceded More

Las Vegas Lights FC hit a low-point on May 26 in Los Angeles when Galaxy II erupted for seven goals in a 7-2 win that was eerily similar to the STLFC visit to town earlier in the month. 20-year old Ethan Zubak, who scored three goals against STLFC, had four goals against the Lights. The team had scored 11 goals in the ten games up to that point in the season.

Since that game in Los Angeles, the team has scored 12 goals in five games. They’ve conceded 11 goals, and sport a 2-2-1 record in those games, but their recent performance has fans buzzing.

What’s behind the recent scoring from the Lights, it could be the presence of two players in practice. Daniel Guzman Jr. and Omar Salgado have been practicing with the club in recent weeks, but won’t be eligible to officially join the club and play in games until after this weekend. The pair has pushed other players, such as 31-year old Sammy Ochoa. Ochoa has four goals and three assists in his last five matches after not recording any of either in his first nine matches of the season.

Las Vegas features the exciting Ricardo Ferriño in goal, who models his game after his hero, Jorge Campos. His style can lead to defensive mistakes and yellow cards. The goalkeeper served a one-match suspension earlier this season for yellow card accumulation. Be on the lookout Saturday for his “aggressive” play, if he plays that is.

In addition to Ochoa, Carlos Alvarez and Daigo Kobyashi have also scored four goals this season to lead the team. Alavarez also matches Ochoa with three assists.

Defender Marco Cesar Jaime Jr will miss Saturday’s game due to yellow card accumulation.

Yes, Freddy Adu Plays For Las Vegas Lights FC

Another name that might ring a bell, if he plays, Saturday is Freddy Adu. The 29-year old Lights midfielder was once the “next big thing” in American soccer. In 2004, he made his Major League Soccer debut with D.C. United and had a guaranteed four-year contract paying him $500,000 per year. He was by far the youngest player in the league and also the highest-paid.

After 87 appearances over three seasons with United, Adu was shipped to Real Salt Lake. He would play just eleven matches for RSL before leaving MLS for Portugal and Benfica. Their were reports that Adu’s transfer to Portugal came after he refused to play in in Real Salt Lake’s final regular season game.

Benfica marked the first of 11 clubs for Adu between 2007 and 2016. He did briefly return to MLS in 2011 but played in only 35 matches over three seasons with the Philadelphia Union before his contract was terminated there when he didn’t factor into a new coach’s plans.

Adu has played less than 300 total minutes this season over seven minutes for Las Vegas. His lone goal this season came on June 2, his 29th birthday. The tally was his first professional goal in three years.

What To Expect From Saint Louis FC

** UPDATE **

STLFC announced late Friday that 6′ 2″ forward Jack Lynn had been signed to the senior team on an Academy contract. According to the release from the club, Lynn was recently in Oceanside, California playing with the Saint Louis FC U19 team at the USSDA Academy Playoffs.

Lynn scored 20 goals and tallied six assists in just 20 games as a junior at Chaminade two seasons ago after scoring 13 times in both his freshman and sophomore campaigns.

For his senior season, he elected to forgo high school soccer and focus on the club season. Like Stanley, Lynn will leave later this Summer for college. Though his father played soccer at Saint Louis University, Jack will play his college ball at Notre Dame.

The Jack Lynn below is apparently not the Jack Lynn the Chupacabras signed.

****

What can you expect to see from Saint Louis FC on Saturday night in Vegas? Hopefully goals.

The Lights have shown that they are willing to give up goals in the pursuit of scoring goals. Not may STLFC fans would put money down on a Chupacabra scoring barrage unless Irvin Herrera is on the pitch against Tulsa; but if there ever was a game to score some goals, this is it.

Look for another strong showing defensively from defenders Sam Fink, Sean Reynolds and Aedan Stanley. Stanley has been one of the best players for the Chupacabras as of late. He was named the Man of the Match by the St. Louligans last time out, although he wasn’t able to fully enjoy the prize.

Stanley’s time with Saint Louis FC is unfortunately coming to an end for this season. He will likely leave for Duke towards the end of this month to begin his college soccer career. At Duke, he’ll compete for playing time on a team that made the NCAA Round of 16 last season. He’ll be fighting for a spot on a back line in front of Will Pulisic, the cousin of Christian Pulisic. Duke begins the 2018 season with an exhibition game on August 11 against Clemson.

Injury news isn’t exactly plentiful at the USL level, but you can listen to KTRS and FC Soccer Weekly Friday night at 7 pm for possible injury updates.

Scouting Cashman Field

Las Vegas Lights FC plays its home games at Cashman Field in Las Vegas, where it has averaged 7,523 fans over eight home matches this season. Club owner Brett Lashbrook knows a thing or two about creating an exciting fan experience. He’s a former special assistant to MLS Commissioner Don Garber but more notably, he’s the former Chief Operating Officer of Orlando City SC.

Once the AAA Las Vegas 51s move to their new stadium next season, Lashbrook and the club will have the ability to renovate “soccer’s version of Wrigley Field” to their ideal specifications, though he already speaks glowingly of the current accommodations.

“When Cashman was built, it was actually built with soccer in mind. It is the only baseball stadium in the world that I’ve ever seen that has center field at a right angle and all the foul territory behind first and third base are equal distance…. The 10,000 seats at Cashman are all front row seats for soccer.”

Single tickets to Lights FC matches at Cashman range from $15 to stand on a grass berm to a $75 pitch-level VIP ticket that includes beer, soda and “small snacks” in addition to access to the Club Restaurants. Season tickets range from $90 to $630 with all-inclusive Club Restaurant packages also available.

Saturday’s match will be the club’s Salute to Service Night to honor veterans, current military and first responders. The club is partnering with Zappos for a special pre-game tailgate party featuring former United States Army Green Beret Nate Boyer as well as an MQ1 Predator Table Drone and a Touch A Military Truck Experience. In addition to recognizing military members during the match, around 200 recruits will also be sworn in at halftime.

Bill McDermott Joins Jake Fenlason & Austin Martz On Outside The Box Podcast

As members of STLFC, Jake Fenlason and Austin Martz are likely quite familiar with broadcaster Bill McDermott. Even saying that, the budding broadcasters might have not known what they were getting themselves into when they had McDermott on their podcast recently.

The Saint Louis FC goalkeeper and injured forward host the Outside The Box podcast for the USL and McDermott on as a guest on their June 22nd episode. McDermott, a 1970 graduate of Saint Louis University who won two soccer National Championships as a Billiken, has been one of the country’s foremost soccer broadcasters since he got his start in 1972. He also posesses enough knowledge about St. Louis and soccer to fill an entire Encyclopaedia Britannica set.

Listening to the episode, you can tell that Fenlason and Martz are enthralled listening to McDermott’s long-winded answers to their questions. A question about the United States hosting the 2026 World Cup leads to a story about how St. Louis and Soccer Park played an important role in FIFA awarding the 1994 World Cup to the United States. Listen to the episode for yourself below.

Listen to the episode of Outside The Box with Bill McDermott here

Speaking of podcasts, you should also listen to the latest episode of the This Is Silly! podcast from the St. Louligans.

Saint Louis FC Returns To World Wide Technology Soccer Park On July 14

Saint Louis FC returns to Toyota Stadium at World Wide Technology Soccer Park on July 14. The Chupacabras will take on Tulsa Roughnecks FC with kickoff set for 7: 30 pm. Get your tickets in advance at SaintLouisFC.com or by calling 636-680-0997.

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