Jacksonville Sports Day

NASL: San Francisco Visits Jacksonville In Clash Between Top Two Sides

It may only be Week 4 of the North American Soccer League (NASL) Spring Season, but the early form of Jacksonville Armada FC and the San Francisco Deltas suggests that both sides could prove to be difficult opponents in 2017.

In a gem of a Spring Season matchup, first-place Armada FC will play host to the second-place Deltas on Saturday night on beIN SPORTS USA. Jacksonville has yet to drop points to begin its campaign, and San Francisco will be looking to continue the momentum gained from the club’s historic victory last weekend.

Up the coast from Jacksonville, two sides will be battling with hopes of reversing their early-season fortunes. North Carolina FC and FC Edmonton will each be seeking their first win of the year when they meet at Sahlen’s Stadium in North Carolina. The encounter will pit a tough Eddies back line against an NCFC attack that is capable of creating plenty of scoring opportunities.

Full previews of each Week 4 matchup can be found below:

Jacksonville Armada FC vs. San Francisco Deltas
7 p.m. ET | Saturday, April 15
Hodges Stadium | Jacksonville, Fla.
Watch | beIN SPORTS USA (National – U.S., Canada), beIN SPORTS CONNECT (National – U.S., Canada), THIS TV (Local – Jacksonville)

The NASL’s top two teams to start the 2017 season face off on Saturday night in Jacksonville. The Deltas take to the road for the first time in league play to meet Armada FC at Hodges Stadium.

San Francisco is coming off its first league win, charging from behind to defeat North Carolina FC, 3-1, last Saturday at Kezar Stadium. The first-year club was powered by two goals from Tom Heinemann and a long-distance strike from Pablo Dyego. Marc Dos Santos’ side has utilized its experienced roster to orchestrate a fast start in NASL play. Former NASL Golden Glove winner Romuald Peiser was particularly good in the win, making five crucial saves, while veteran defender Nana Attakora made 13 clearances to help preserve the win.

Jacksonville has taken the maximum points available so far – the only club with the distinction – showing a knack for grinding out results so far. Armada FC picked up a pair of successive 1-0 wins over FC Edmonton and returns to Hodges Stadium after Zach Steinberger’s early goal held up last weekend. The defensive pairing of veteran captain Aaron Pitchkolan and Haitian international Mechack Jérôme has been rock solid, combining for 14 clearances and eight duels won in the recent victory.

North Carolina FC vs. FC Edmonton
7:30 p.m. ET | Saturday, April 15
Sahlen’s Stadium | Cary, N.C.
Watch | ESPN3 (National – U.S.), NASL.com (National – Canada), Spectrum SportsChannel (Regional – North/South Carolina), WRAL2 (Local – Cary/Raleigh)

North Carolina FC and FC Edmonton both enter the weekend contest aiming to build some much-needed momentum. NCFC recently fell, 3-1, in San Francisco, while the Eddies still have yet to earn a point in 2017 after losing twice to Jacksonville.

Tiyi Shipalane gave NCFC an early lead on Saturday night, but the club was unable to get past goalkeeper Romuald Peiser again, setting the stage for a Deltas comeback. On a positive note, the club was able to fire off seven shots on target – something they will look to recreate on Saturday night. The combination of Shipalane, Nazmi Albadawi, and Matt Fondy has proven time and time again that opportunities will be created, but North Carolina will have a tough back line to crack against the Eddies.

FC Edmonton dropped both games, 1-0, to Jacksonville, but defender Albert Watson has been a force in the heart of the club’s defense. The center back won eight of nine duels and four of five tackles while adding five clearances and six interceptions last weekend at Clarke Stadium. At the other end, defender Adam Straith came closest to scoring the club’s first goal of the year, but his header rattled off the crossbar. On Saturday in Jacksonville, the Eddies will aim to end a 270-minute regular-season scoreless streak that dates back to last year.

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