Bethlehem Steel FC (7-6-1) vs Richmond Kickers (2-8-5)
2017 USL Regular Season
DATE: Saturday, July 1, 2017
KICKOFF: 5:00 p.m.
STADIUM: Goodman Stadium, Bethlehem, PA
ALL-TIME SERIES: 1-0-1
AT BETHLEHEM: 1-0-0
ONLINE: USL Match Center
RICHMOND, Va – (Friday, June 30, 2017) – The Richmond Kickers (2-8-5) travel to Bethlehem Steel FC (7-6-1) Saturday for their first meeting of 2017. The match will be available to stream online through the USL Match Center.
Bethlehem enters their second season in the USL, holding a 1-0-1 advantage over the Kickers. Eric Ayuk had a goal and an assist as Steel FC took a 2-1 victory over the Kickers in their first-ever meeting April 17, 2016. Yudai Imura scored a consolation goal in the 50th minute of that match, his third of a team-high 11 goals in 2016. The two clubs met again June 25, where Charlie Horton and Samir Badr recorded clean sheets, despite the Kickers outshooting the visitors 14-6 at City Stadium.
Richmond enters Saturday’s match on a 10-match winless streak following a 2-0 loss at home against the Charlotte Independence. Enzo Martinez scored in each half, first from a penalty and then a header, to earn the Independence’s first win at City Stadium.
Steel FC are on a five-match unbeaten streak, including wins in their last three matches. Bethlehem are back at Goodman Stadium following three matches on the road, most recently a 1-0 win at the Harrisburg City Islanders. Adam Najem picked out James Chambers in the 54th minute, notching the game winner and his third goal of the season.
The Kickers continue their road trip next Sunday at FC Cincinnati at 6 p.m. From there, Richmond heads to the Harrisburg City Islanders July 15 for a 7 p.m. kickoff and will be shown live on WTVR CBS 6.3 (Comcast 206/ Verizon FiOS 466). Both matches will be available live on the they host Swansea City AFC of the English Premier LeagueKickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. Tickets and more information can be found at RichmondKickers.com.
Richmond: Midfielder Fred Owusu Sekyere (#4) leads the Kickers in assists with three, and has also scored two goals this season. Now in his third season in Richmond, the former Virginia Commonwealth University product has 76 appearances, four goals and 11 assists after spending the 2014 season with the Charlotte Eagles. Defender Braeden Troyer (#31) has appeared in all but one match this season for Richmond, helping the team to three clean sheets in 2017. Also in his third season, Troyer has made 75 appearances and has one assist after signing with the Kickers following a successful tryout in January of 2015. Midfielder Raul Gonzalez (#27) has made nine appearances in 2017, eight of which were starts. Gonzalez scored his first professional goal from a free kick on the road against the Rochester Rhinos back on May 21.
Bethlehem: Defender Hugh Roberts (#42) is in his first season with Steel FC following three seasons in Richmond. The 2016 USL All-League Team choice and finalist for the USL Defender of the Year made 86 appearances, with three goals and an assist. The product of George Mason University signed with Richmond after a successful tryout. Leading Steel FC in scoring with seven goals, forward Seku Conneh (#36) is in his second season with the club. Capped by the Liberian National Team on two occasions, Conneh signed prior to the 2016 season after spending the 2015 season with FC Oss in the Netherlands, making ten appearances and scoring twice. Midfielder James Chambers (#45) is in his second season with Bethlehem scoring three goals in ten appearances this season. Before joining Steel FC, Chambers had his second stint with St. Patrick’s Athletic in Ireland from 2014-2016 scoring six goals in 57 appearances.