AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin FC returns to the Q2 Stadium pitch Thursday night for a rematch with the Western Conference-leading Seattle Sounders.
Austin and Seattle settled for a scoreless draw in Seattle on May 30, capping off a third straight goalless match for Verde. While the two prior matches for Austin FC resulted in losses and frustration, the draw against Seattle was seen as a celebration against one of Major League Soccer’s best sides.
This time, Austin FC will have the home field advantage with a sold out crowd behind it at Q2 Stadium. This will be Verde’s first MLS match in 15 days. Austin FC lost 3-1 in a friendly to Tigres UANL on July 13.
Austin FC head coach Josh Wolff said the break from the MLS schedule allowed his team to mend from nagging injuries after a grinding schedule to start the season.
Team captain Alex Ring said the time off allowed him to heal.
“I think I played the last four games with an ankle issue that didn’t let me really train and the games… it was painful and now I’ve got a little bit of time off and I feel much better than I did before,” Ring said. “It was nice to get away and calm down for a little bit, spend some time with family and friends so I think all in all everyone is pretty happy.”
Moussa Djitté, Austin FC’s latest signing, will not be available for Thursday’s 8:30 p.m. kickoff. Wolff hopes Djitté will be ready for July 28 against Vancouver.
Seattle lost its first match of the season Sunday at Minnesota. The Sounders still lead the conference with 29 points through 14 games. Austin FC is in 10th place with 13 points in 13 games.
Where to watch
Seattle Sounders at Austin FC
When: Thursday at 8:30 p.m. (Kickoff at 8:48 p.m.)
Where: Q2 Stadium (Austin, Texas)
Listen: ALT 97.5 FM
Watch: ESPN Deportes
Listen: TUDN Radio Austin (104.3-HD2, KLQB)
MLS Western Conference Standings