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March to the CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH: Swope Park Rangers

WHO:

Swope Park Rangers, Western Conference Playoff Champions, minions of Hat Trick Harry up there.

WHAT:

The USL Cup Final

WHEN:

Monday, November 13, 2017, 9:00 p.m. EST

WHERE:

Louisville Slugger Field, 401 W. Main Street, Louisville, KY 40202

WATCH:

I’m fairly certain the game will be sold out by the time this publishes. If you don’t already have a ticket, well, you should have known better. The game will be broadcast on ESPNU for TV, and 840 WHAS will have the radio call.

WHO, AGAIN?

This match marks the first ever meeting between Swope Park and Louisville City. This is SPR’s second straight trip to the final, which is definitely a statement about the strength of their team and not an indictment of the Western Conference. Nope. Not at all.

Swope is a good team. They play with a lot of pace, and want to go up the middle of the field to score goals. Watching them play when they have the ball is honestly pretty reminiscent of how Louisville City has played in the past: Possess the ball, dominate the midfield, break apart the centerbacks, score goals.

Swope Park can play some really attractive soccer. They’ve got some all-league worthy players on their side as well: Kharlton Belmar, Kevin Olivera, and James Musa are quite talented. The right side of Louisville City’s defense is going to need to be on their toes to try and keep Belmar reigned in, in particular. The SPR goalkeeper Adrian Zendejas is a rangy guy with a lot of upside.

This should be a fun game to watch. Both teams like to use their pace to score goals. Both teams like to own the possession battle. Swope prefers a more narrow shape while LouCity’s success this season has come from using Kyle Smith and Oscar to attack wide areas, opening up space in the center. Styles make fights, and both of these teams have entertaining attacks. The result might come down to whose defense is better prepared.

I’m beyond jacked for a fun match that’s been three-plus years in the making. Slugger’s gonna be packed, the city’s been buzzing for over a week. I’m confident in our team’s chances. Let’s go get it.

For the last time in 2017, COME ON, CITY!