Seattle Sounders 2 are down in the Arizona desert to face the Fighting Drogbas AKA the Warring Pete Wentz’s AKA the Destroying Diplos AKA Phoenix Rising FC. The story isn’t likely to focus on Didier Drogba, who hasn’t played since the end of May, or any of the owners, but rather the fall out (just playing with words) of playing soccer in the middle of the summer in the increasingly hot Sonoran Desert.
Despite the kickoff being at 8:00 PM local time (which is also 8:00 in the Puget Sound because Arizona did something right for once and nixed Daylight Saving time), the temperature is set to be 102°F at kickoff. Thankfully, sunset in Central Arizona is around 7:30 so they won’t be playing in heat and direct sunlight, but it still provides S2 with a significant challenge. They will need to take full advantage of the hydration breaks and any other lengthy stoppages.
As for the actual opponent they will face in the brutal heat, Phoenix Rising are definitely in the top tier of Western Conference teams, sitting in 5th with the ability to catch everyone but the Real Monarchs with their games in hand. Their success is due to their quick strike and clinical offense. Despite being at the bottom of the Western Conference in total passes and passing percentage, they are second only to Orange County in goals scored. When they decide to go for it, they go for it. They have three players with more than 6 goals, and none of them are named Didier (who has 4 goals in 5 matches).
This is the type of team that punishes S2’s young backline, as they are still susceptible to lapses in concentration. They will have to show a new level of discipline to keep a clean sheet against Phoenix. Who knows, maybe this is the match where they show they can put together a full 90 minutes in the back.
nos audietis in somniis | nos audietis in altum
you will hear us in your sleep | you will hear us from the deep
this is our Sound
Keys to the Game
- Make it through the match
- Get in the box when Ulysse has the ball wide
- Feast on that sweet, sweet Chenkam holdup play
Here is YOUR S2 Starting XI for #PHXvSEA— Seattle Sounders 2 (@SoundersFC2) July 21, 2018
Match kicks off in 1⃣ hour! pic.twitter.com/LyQCO0LO6Y
Tonight's Starting XI. #RisingAsOne pic.twitter.com/jouKESb8Cf— Phoenix Rising FC (@PHXRisingFC) July 21, 2018
How to Watch
Match date/time: 8:00 PM PT, Friday, July 20, 2018
Venue: Phoenix Rising Soccer Complex I Salt River Pima–Maricopa Indian Community, Salt River Watershed, Sonoran Desert, North America
How I'm watching
Outfit: An outfit made for three points.
Where: South of Seattle, south of Renton, south of Kent.