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Defending USL Cup Champions Await Bethlehem Steel FC Saturday

By Bethlehem Steel FC Communications, 06/08/18, 9:00AM EDT


Squad returns home looking to build upon recent strong form

Having won three of its last four contests, Bethlehem Steel FC looks to continue their recent form as they host defending USL Cup Champions Louisville City FC on Saturday, June 9. Kick off from Goodman Stadium is scheduled for 5 p.m. and will be broadcast locally on Service Electric and streamed on ESPN+.

Steel FC returns home after three-consecutive road matches that saw the club defeat newcomers Indy Eleven and North Carolina FC. Last weekend in the win over North Carolina, Steel FC showcased it’s never say die attitude by overcoming a one-goal deficit with two goals in two minutes to claim all three points. Steel FC midfielder Santi Moar led the charge with two assists that had him claim USL Team of the Week honors for the second time this season. Moar connected with Union Academy defender Ben Ofeimu in the 83rd minute then delivered a timely pass to Michee Ngalina for the winner.

“There aren’t many teams that are consistently winning on the road, they might get draws but it’s hard to win on the road,” Bethlehem Steel FC head coach Brendan Burke said. “We’ve told the guys that energy and fight are the two keys ingredients and they showed both of them in the second half at North Carolina.”

Saturday evening’s match in the Lehigh Valley will be the sixth all-time meeting between Steel FC and Louisville City FC but just the second at Goodman Stadium. Louisville City owns a 4-0-2 lead in the all-time series but Steel FC claimed one of its two draws on its home field. The contest is the second and final regular season match between the two squads, with Steel FC falling by a 3-1 margin on April 28. The defending league champions used a nine-minute burst in which they scored three times to pull away while Marcus Epps scored his first goal of 2018 just before halftime.

“We are only 13 games into the season and you don’t start calling games must-wins using massive urgency,” Burke said to media this week. “I think the urgency is something we are trying to instill into the guys week to week anyway and if they can’t get up for the top team in the league that just beat an MLS opponent last night, then what would you get up for. Between that and going to Cincinnati, these are two massive opportunities for whatever guys get to roll out onto the field.”

Louisville City FC enters the match after knocking off the MLS’s New England Revolution in the Fourth Round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, 3-2. Sitting just one point from the Eastern Conference lead, Louisville enters the weekend after knocking off Atlanta United 2 and FC Cincinnati the past two weekends. Forward Cameron Lancaster paces the offense with six goals in eight appearances, with two of those goals coming against Steel FC earlier this season. The team’s focus on defense has continued in their title defense, having allowed just seven goals in 10 matches this year.

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