Republic FC’s Mexican National Team cruised to a 3-1 win over Tampa Bay Rowdies – representing Colombia - in Division B’s Wednesday afternoon Quarterfinal Round of the USL eCup FIFA20 Edition.
The midweek win means three-seeded SRFC is a lock for promotion to Division A next week and advances the Indomitable Club into Thursday’s Semifinal Round of Division B’s bracket. Next up for the boys in Old Glory Red is the 10-seeded Charleston Battery – competing as Greece – who trounced Phoenix Rising FC’s Netherlands 7-1 on Wednesday.
Manning the Playstation 4 controller for Republic FC against TB was Justin Sterk, winner of the inaugural SRFCxFIFA20 Tournament. Sterk, a longtime SRFC supporter and Folsom High School graduate, had an attack-minded plan in place and played it through to near perfection against eSports gamer for the Floridian club, Carlos Rueda.
Both sides created plenty of scoring chances during the opening 45 minutes and the match was very much back and forth through the entirety of the first half until El Tri finally broke through on the cusp of halftime when Raul Jimenez delivered a delicate threw ball to Hirving Lozano who buried his shot from close range. The stoppage time strike lifted Mexico to a 1-0 lead and the goal was Chucky’s first of the competition.
Mexico doubled its lead in the 68th minute when Jimenez collected possession just inside the box, quickly turned and rifled a fight-footed shot by the Colombian goalkeeper. El Tri found a third goal just five minutes later when the Wolverhampton Wanderers’ forward and Wednesday’s Man of the Match bagged his brace, elevating his goal-scoring tally during the tournament to a team-best four goals.
The South American nation did manage to collect a consolation score and avoid being completely shutout when Juventus winger Juan Cuadrado netted Colombia’s lone goal of the game in the 87th minute.
Thursday’s Semifinal showdown against Charleston Battery’s Greece-side will be streamed live on the club’s Twitch stream, twitch.tv/SacramentoRepublicFC/, with kickoff set for 5 p.m. PT.
Fans following the Indomitable Club’s eCup matches have the opportunity to donate to SRFC partner Raley’s Food for Families, the charity the club will be representing throughout the tournament. Additional information about the eCup competition can be found on the official USL eCup: FIFA20 Edition page and the full schedule can be found on the eCup Schedule page.
Justin’s Starting XI – Guillermo Ochoa; Jesus Gallardo, Nestor Araujo, Edson Alvarez, Luis Rodriguez; Hector Herrera, Andres Guardado ©, Rodolfo Pizarro; Hirving Lozano, Jesus Corona, Raul Jimenez.
Scoring Summary – SAC – Hirving Lozano (45’), Raul Jimenez (68’, 73’); TB – Juan Cuadrado (87’)
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