Keep Your Enemy Closer: North Carolina FC

Apr 20, 2017

Photo Credit: North Carolina FC 

MIAMI (April 20, 2016) – The Miami FC is back at Riccardo Silva Stadium this Saturday, April 22 for a matchup with North Carolina FC. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.

Finishing is Everything
North Carolina FC hosted struggling FC Edmonton last Saturday. NCFC came away with a dominant 3-1 victory in what, on paper, looked like an evenly matched contest.

It was North Carolina’s sharpness in front of the goal that led to the win. Both sides fired 15 shots in the match, but NCFC put seven on target to Edmonton’s two. Edmonton won the possession battle and out passed North Carolina, but could not exploit the NCFC defense.

Midfielder Lance Laing opened the scoring in just the fourth minute with an absolute rocket of a free kick that earned NASL Play of the Week.

NCFC stalwart Nazmi Albadawi doubled the advantage in the 23rd minute with a precise strike from outside the box that found the bottom right corner.

The lead ballooned to 3-0 in the 48th minute, thanks to a close-range finish from forward Matt Fondy.

FC Edmonton would avoid the shutout with a goal in the 71st minute, but it would prove to be too little too late as NCFC walked away with all three points.

All the Good and All the Bad
North Carolina FC has been stellar on offense, scoring a NASL-high five goals, but currently sit fourth in the Spring Season Standings. The club’s defensive struggles can account for their current position, as they have also allowed a NASL-high five goals.

All three teams currently ahead of NCFC, including the Miami FC, have scored less goals then the North Carolina club, but have also allowed fewer.

The Orange and Blue will look to exploit this crack in NCFC’s squad and pick up only the second victory in this burgeoning rivalry that has already seen three draws. The Miami FC must also be careful to not get caught on the break as NCFC finsihes any chances that it is given.

Players to Watch
Matt Fondy continues to be North Carolina FC’s go-to goal scorer after he found the back of the net again last week.

The veteran forward has scored twice in three matches, tying him for first place early in the 2017 season.

Fondy joined NCFC late last year but still went on to lead the team in scoring, tallying seven goals and adding two assists.

Nazmi Albadawi continues to be a creative force in the NASL. Through three matches, Albadawi has created a league-best nine scoring chances and has put four of his five shots on target, netting one goal.

The 25-year-old midfielder is coming off a strong 2016 season, leading the league in assists with 10. His 50 chances created was the second highest total and his 1374 passes ranked sixth in the league.

Up Next
The Miami FC closes out a three-match homestand on April 29, when the club hosts FC Edmonton on Cuban Heritage Night. Get your tickets now at MiamiFC.com/Tickets!