Match Preview 9.10
North Texas SC/Jack Wallace

North Texas SC vs Richmond Kickers Match Preview | 9.10.19

FRISCO — USL League One leaders North Texas SC (14-5-5 (+16), 47 points) will host eighth place Richmond Kickers (8-10-4 (-4), 28 points) at Toyota Stadium on Tuesday, September 10 at 7 PM CT. The teams have played twice in Virginia this season, with both games going the way of North Texas.

Current Form
North Texas SC has fully recovered from a loss from Lansing to find some of their best form of the year. They have pulled off three wins in a row by a cumulative score line of 10-1 and look like the team that started the season with five wins in a row. While they stuttered at home during a rough patch in the middle of the year, they are unbeaten at home in their last three matches and will be looking to continue their form and secure home field advantage for the first round of playoffs.

The Opponent
Richmond Kickers are on the outside looking in at the moment, but they will come to Frisco full of confidence. They have found their best form of the year at exactly the right time as they try and edge into the playoff picture. Three weeks ago, they were essentially out of contention, but some impressive results mean they are only five points out of fourth place. They have won two in a row, both against playoff teams, and have improved dramatically on the road, winning three of their last four away from Virginia.

Players to Watch
North Texas has improved their attack and have scored in six straight games. One of the reasons their attack has been so potent has been the improvement of forward Richard Danso. Although it took him a few months to get up to speed, since his first start against Chattanooga in August he has been ever present, starting seven games in a row. He scored his first goal against Tormenta, and averages more than a key pass per start. Most impressively, although he has only made eight appearances, he leads the team in attempted crosses. 

Richmond have struggled mightily to score all year, averaging one goal a game. They have depended on their defense, now the third best in the league to keep them in the playoff hunt. One of their key defensive performers has been Wahab Ackwei, who has the most minutes and starts for any Richmond defender. Ackwei leads them team in four crucial defensive categories: clearances, blocks, aerial duels, and aerial duels won. He also ranks second in interceptions. If Richmond are to walk away from Frisco with points, Ackwei will have to be at his absolute best.