Detroit City FC (M) vs Memphis 901 FC

April 2, 2022
USL Championship League Match
Keyworth Stadium, Hamtramck, MI

As We Grow, the World Grows Smaller

On July 29, 2017, five years into Detroit City FC’s existence, the team faced AFC Ann Arbor for the NPSL Midwest Region championship.  The March to the Match speech began like this…

That “hot-shot assistant coach from Michigan State” was Ben Pirmann.

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Pirmann was hired in 2013, our second season, and led us to an undefeated season, with a record of 11-wins and 1-draw.  Unfortunately, we lost in the NPSL Midwest Region Final.  Nicknamed “Caesar,” a result of a verbal miscue during a meet-and-greet with supporters, Pirmann created a foundation of success for Detroit City FC during his six seasons as Head Coach.

But as the man said, look where we are now.  Pirmann moved on to Memphis 901 FC of the USL Championship, and now we are in the same orbit, here to welcome him home…sort of.

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This is Memphis 901 FC’s fourth season in the USL, having accumulated 27 wins, 19 draws, and 35 losses over 81 contests.  Last year was the first time Memphis made the playoffs, bowing out in the first round by a 3-1 loss to Charlotte Independence.  They come into the match with a two-game win streak, after having lost their season opener at home against the Pittsburgh Riverhounds.

In City’s last home match, the Bear banner was not on display.  Someone in the league or someone who saw it complained to the league about it being too offensive.  Today, the banner returned, with a touch-up to make it less offensive.

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Today was also City midfielder Michael Bryant’s birthday, so you may notice a few mustaches donned in the Gallery photos of the Northern Guard Section to celebrate.

MEMPHIS 901 FC
Starting XI

Trey Muse – GK
Rece Buckmaster – D
Graham Smith – D
Niall Louge – D
Jeremy Kelly – M
Patrick Seagrist – M
Aaron Molloy – M
Leston Paul – M
Laurent Kissiedou – M
Phillip Goodrum – F
Derek Dodson – F

DETROIT CITY FC
Starting XI

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Front Row, Left to Right

Deklan Wynne – M
Pato Botello Faz – F
Antoine Hoppenot – F
Abdoulaye Diop – M
Rhys Williams – M

Back Row, Left to Right

Devon Amoo-Mensah – D
Maxi Rodriguez – M
Connor Rutz – F
Matt Lewis – D
Nate Steinwascher – GK
Stephen Carroll – D, Captain

The head referee was Jeremy Scheer.  He has been the head official in 20 matches in the USL Championship during the 2020 and 2021 seasons, having handed out 106 yellow cards, 1 second yellow card ejection, and 5 red cards.  Earlier this year, he was the head official for 1 NWSL match and 2 NWSL Challenge Cup matches.  In this young 2022 USL Championship season, he officiated two matches; the March 19th Tampa Bay Rowdies-Indy Eleven (2-0) match, dishing out 5 yellow cards and a 2nd yellow card ejection to Indy’s Raul Aguilera Jr., and the March 28th Rio Grande Valley FC-San Antonio FC (1-2) match where he dealt 9 yellow cards (3 & 6, respectively).  His assistants were John Krull and Eric Burton.  Kevin Fikar was the fourth official.

It was an odd first half.  Characteristically, Detroit maintained much of the possession (62% to 38%), but none of the five shots City took were on target.  Uncharacteristically, the usually disciplined City drew two yellow cards from referee Scheer’s pocket – one to Abdoulaye Diop in the 13th minute for a take down of a Memphis midfielder as they began penetrating the City zone, and another to Maxi Rodriguez in the 40th minute for a foul on Aaron Molloy.

City also went into the halftime locker room down a goal.  In the 28th minute, Jeremy Kelly picked up a clearing attempt from the City 25-yard box, then drove through the center on direct path to goal.  He pushed the ball toward the far post where Philip Goodrum charged in, sliding into its path and directing it into the net.

Not exactly the homecoming we had in mind for Caesar.

In the second half, the switch was flipped, but it took a little time.  In the 53rd minute, Laurent Kissiedou of Memphis was yellow carded for a foul on Devon Amoo-Mensah.  Trevor James took the pause to sub Brad Dunwell in for Abdoulaye Diop.  That change began to tip the field in City’s favor.

In the 60th minute, Deklan Wynne fired a shot from outside the box which forced Trey Muse to make a save.  A minute later, Antoine Hoppenot guided a ball into the path of Connor Rutz’s run, however Muse made the save.  Another minute later, Rhys Williams crossed the ball in to Maxi Rodriguez who headed it onto the crossbar.

In the 66th minute, Pirmann made his first substitution of the match, with Devin Boyce stepping in for Laurent Kissiedou.  Rhys Williams for City drew a yellow card in the 68th minute for a tackle on Philip Goodrum.

City kept pressing and the chances kept coming.  In the 72nd minute, Maxi Rodriguez sent the ball to Connor Rutz whose shot sailed just wide of goal.  The breakthrough came a minute later.  Rhys Williams, from the center stripe, ran the ball down the right side of the pitch, out-distancing Phillip Goodrum, then crossed the ball while being chased down by Patrick Seagrist to the front of the box where Pato Botello-Faz trapped and fired a shot past Muse to level the match.

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And City kept coming.  Chances in the 76th, 80th, 81st, and 85th minute could have secured City the victory.  Unfortunately, none of them found the back of the net.

Player of the Match: Pato Botello-Faz.

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City piled on 11 shots in the second half with four of them finding the target.  Memphis doubled their shots in the second half, however none of them were on goal, and likely came in the first fifteen minutes of the half when they were still in the game.

Pato’s goal was awarded the USL Championship Goal of the Week. Rhys Williams earned honorable mention on the USL Championship Team of the Week.

STATS

Detroit City FC 1, Memphis 901 FC 1
M9FC:  Phillip Goodrum (Jeremy Kelly) 28′
DCFC:  Pato Botello-Faz (Rhys Williams) 73′

ATTENDANCE:  4,157

Possession: DCFC 63.1%, M901 36.9%
Offsides:  DCFC 1, M901 2
Corners:  DCFC 5, M901 3
Passes:  DCFC 519, M901 308
Passing Accuracy:  DCFC 78.0%, M901 69.2%
Shots:  DCFC 16, M901 9
Shots on Target: DCFC 4, M901 2
Blocked Shots:  DCFC 2, M901 3
Fouls: DCFC 13, M901 12
Yellow Cards:  DCFC 3 (Diop, Rodriguez, Williams), M901 1 (Kissiedou)
Red Cards:  DCFC 0, PR 0

KEEPER KIT RECORD

Today’s draw in the blue kit updates the kit record as follows:

  • Purple Kit:  1 draw
  • Yellow Kit: 1 win
  • Blue Kit: 1 draw, 1 loss.

IN OTHER USL CHAMPIONSHIP MATCHES TODAY:

Hartford Athletic 1, Atlanta United2 2
Indy Eleven 1, Los Angeles Galaxy2 1
Pittsburgh Riverhounds 2, Loudoun United 0
Miami FC 1, Colorado Springs Switchbacks 2
Birmingham Legion 0, Louisville City 0
FC Tulsa 3, New York Red Bull2 2
San Antonio FC 0, Phoenix Rising FC 2
Oakland Roots 0, Tampa Bay Rowdies 0
Sacramento Republic FC 2, Monterrey Bay FC 1

Gallery

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