USL Championship and NISA Teams Face-Off in Preseason Battle
Southern California has always been a hot bed for soccer and now in San Diego there is a USL Championship team as well as a NISA team — two American professional men’s soccer leagues which are under Major League Soccer. This weekend, the two pro teams played the San Diego Derby — a preseason warm up with bragging rights.
USL Championship’s San Diego Loyal dominated the first of two 75 minute sessions against NISA’s 1904 FC in a preseason San Diego Derby. With a dominating 6-0 performance at the Chula Vista Athlete Training Center on Sunday afternoon, the SD Loyal’s proved their power and agility on the pitch.
While the results may be lopsided, these are secondary to the importance of having two professional soccer clubs helping each other improve and showcasing the plethora of talent in the Southern California region.
SD Loyal opened the scoring in the seventh minute thanks to a beautiful move from recently acquired forward Niki Jackson who was taken down inside the box by the 1904 FC defense with the penalty being converted by striker Corey Hertzog. This was a sign off things to come as the team, under the command of head coach Landon Donovan did not let up and continued the pressure throughout the entire match.
San Diego Loyal scored their second goal in the 27th minute courtesy of defender Morgan Hackworth — and, then flood gates were open.
The Loyals added two goals from Jackson, another from the penalty spot from Corey Hertzog and closed out the session with an outstanding goal from captain Sal Zizzo. Goalkeeper Austin Guerrero did not have many interventions, thanks to the clear dominance in possession enjoyed by San Diego Loyal, but he did respond adeptly the few times his presence was required.
Seven of the eleven players who played in the session are confirmed on the Loyal’s roster for this upcoming regular season.
The second session, all but one player in the starting lineup has been confirmed to be on the roster for 2021 USL Championship season. The second match was a more competitive match with 1904 FC finding the back of the net once — but San Diego Loyal still came out on top with a final score of 3-1.
After a defensive lapse that saw the USL squad fall behind in the 8th minute, San Diego Loyal leveled the score in the 17th minute, courtesy of midfielder Miguel Ángel Ibarra. Shorly thereafter, in the 22nd minute, fellow midfielder Charlie Adams scored to seize the lead.
The third and final goal of the match came from the Englishman and recently acquire from Real Monarchs, Jack Blake.
“It is great to have two teams here that people care about. It is pretty obvious there is a lot of talent in this part of the county.”Landon Donovan – San Diego Loyal Head Coach
“For the first time: It’s SD vs SD. It’s a game we wish we could be playing in front of you.”
“San Diego Clasico? Nah its just preseason” 🙂 For the first time: It’s SD vs SD. It’s a game we wish we could be playing in front of you. First of many we hope. Great Day for SD Football. And it’s history. ✍🏼 ⏱Today, 1PM ⚽️1904 FC B vs SD Loyal B ⚽️ 1904 FC A vs SD Loyal A pic.twitter.com/nRjidragxc— 1904 FC (@1904_FC) March 28, 2021
Both teams, as well as the community as a whole, are well served by continuing to meet in head-to-head matches as they prepare for high level competition in their respective leagues.
Everyone looks forward to the next match up.
San Diego Loyal remain home for their next to last preseason match against New Mexico United as they prepare for their regular season opener against Phoenix Rising on April 30th.
1904 FC also continues preparations to open the NISA Legends Cup on April 13th against Michigan Stars FC.”
Images: San Diego Loyal – Facebook