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Match Preview: Republic FC vs. Phoenix Rising FC

By Sean Steimel, 06/08/18, 4:15PM PDT

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Sacramento and Phoenix complete their season series on Saturday at Papa Murphy's Park. Kickoff is set for 8 p.m.

Sacramento Republic FC will play their third match in seven days when they return to USL action at home this Saturday, June 9, against Phoenix Rising FC. Kickoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. and the match will be broadcast live on KQCA My58, Estrella TV 58.3, ESPN+ and Sports 1140 KHTK.

Saturday’s matchup will be the second and final meeting between Sacramento and Phoenix during the regular season. Republic FC earned an impressive 3-1 victory in Phoenix on May 19th, with Cameron Iwasa, Villyan Bijev and Wilson Kneeshaw all getting on the scoresheet. Goalkeeper Josh Cohen was also an important figure for the club that night, as he made several key saves on Didier Drogba, including stopping a penalty kick from the former Chelsea FC player. Sacramento now holds a 6-2-3 all-time record against Phoenix and a 2-1-0 recorded since the club rebranded to Phoenix Rising FC.

Republic FC enter the matchup after advancing to the Round of 16 of the 2018 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup with a 2-1 victory over MLS side Seattle Sounders FC on Wednesday night. Iwasa opened the scoring in the 60th minute following link up play from Bijev, Adam Moffat and Elliott Hord. After Sounders FC equalized in stoppage time to send the match into extra time, Jure Matjasic tapped home a rebound from an Iwasa shot in the 115th minute to seal the victory over Seattle. The win sends Sacramento through into the Round of 16 for the second consecutive year, with both trips earned in wins over MLS sides.

Phoenix Rising FC (7-3-3) sits in a second place in the USL’s Western Conference with an identical record as Republic FC, but a slight advantage in goal differential. Since the two sides met in May, Phoenix has travelled to Kansas City, where they fell 1-0 to Swope Park Rangers, and Saint Louis, where they claimed a 3-1 victory. Chris Cortez, Solomon Asante and Didier Drogba have paced one of the most potent attacks in the USL. Cortez leads the team in goals, while Asante earned a spot on the USL Team of the Week for his performance against Saint Luis.

Live updates of the match will be provided via Twitter by following @SacRepublicFC or #SACvPHX. To see more matchday information, visit SacRepublicFC.com/matchday-guide.  Tickets to the match can be purchased via Ticketmaster.com.

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