The coaches of the three NASL teams on the verge of capturing the 2013 Spring Season title and with it the right to host Soccer Bowl know what their teams have to do this evening in order to truly celebrate on the Fourth of July.
Here they are, in their words, describing the task ahead this evening.
“It’s a big, big game,” said RailHawks coach Colin Clarke, whose side can be crowned champions with a win on Thursday night away to the Scorpions. “San Antonio is playing their best of late, so it won’t be easy for us traveling there in the final week of the Spring Season.
“Each week was a tough match and one you had to work hard for. We have put ourselves in a good position going into this final week and now we need to take advantage of being at the top of the table. If we do that, we will have achieved our goal of winning the spring and hosting Soccer Bowl.”
Tim Hankinson of the Scorpions says: “Thursday's game can obviously decide a title. We can't control what Atlanta does, but we can certainly control our own park and what we have to do.
“Scoring three goals in any match is always a mountain to climb, but I feel that the team is ready to reach for that and they have been all season.”
Silverbacks coach Brian Haynes says: “If we stick to the game plan in Minnesota, I think we’ll get a result that is favorable to us.
“We don’t care where the goals from. It’s going to be a concentrated effort from all of the guys.”
And just for good measure, here are the various scenarios as they could play out tonight:
- Will win the Spring Season championship with a win at San Antonio
- Will win the Spring Season championship with a draw at San Antonio provided Atlanta does not make up a goal difference currently +4 in favor of Carolina*
- Will win the Spring Season championship with a loss provided San Antonio wins by two goals or fewer coupled with an Atlanta draw or loss
- Will win the Spring Season championship with a win at Minnesota and a Carolina loss
- Will win the Spring Season championship with a win at Minnesota and a Carolina draw provided Atlanta is able to overturn a goal difference currently +4 in favor of Carolina*
* If Carolina draws 1-1 and Atlanta wins 4-0, Atlanta will win by the third tiebreaker of head to head (W1, D1) vs. Carolina because goal differential and goals scored will be level
San Antonio Scorpions
- Will win the Spring Season championship with a win vs. Carolina and an Atlanta draw or loss, provided San Antonio wins by at least three goals
Teams finishing level on points – which could happen between Carolina and Atlanta or Carolina and San Antonio - are separated first by goal difference, followed by goals scored, head to head record with their tied opponent and then away goal difference and away goals scored.
Week 14 Schedule (All kickoff times US EST)
Thursday, July 4
Tampa Bay vs. Fort Lauderdale Strikers
Al Lang Stadium, St. Petersburg, Fla. 6:30 pm
Minnesota United FC vs. Atlanta Silverbacks
NSC Stadium, Blaine, Minn. 8:00 pm
San Antonio Scorpions vs. Carolina RailHawks
Toyota Field, San Antonio, Tex. 8:30 pm
|Rowdies Get Even Rowdier|
|Ricky Hill Returns As Rowdies Coach|
|Throwback Thursday - Pre-NASL: Oakland Top Baltimore To Win 1967 NPSL Championship|
|Indy Eleven Add Four More To 2014 NASL Roster|
|Scorpions Sign Danny Barrera, Jonathan Fana|
|Cosmos Defender To Play In Testimonial Match|
|Milton Blanco Joins FC Edmonton|
|Ottawa Fury FC Sign Irish Midfielder Richie Ryan|
|Silverbacks Exercise Contract Options To 11 Players For 2014 NASL Season|
|Silverbacks Part Ways With Haynes|
|New York Cosmos||14||9||4||1||10||31|
|Tampa Bay Rowdies||14||5||5||4||3||20|
|Minnesota United FC||14||6||2||6||2||20|
|Fort Lauderdale Strikers||14||5||3||6||-2||18|
|San Antonio Scorpions||14||3||1||10||-9||10|
|San Antonio Scorpions||12||6||2||4||4||20|
|Tampa Bay Rowdies||12||5||3||4||5||18|
|Minnesota United FC||12||4||2||6||-5||14|
|Fort Lauderdale Strikers||12||2||2||8||-14||8|