Memphis, Tenn. – After a historic regular season, Memphis 901 FC is set to host the first home playoff match in the club’s history when they face Detroit City FC in the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals on Saturday, October 22 at 7 p.m. CT at AutoZone Park.
The stage is set as Memphis looks to improve upon last season’s first-round exit with a playoff run after already setting the new marks for points, wins and goals scored this season. 901 FC finished with a 21-8-5 regular season, earning the No. 2 spot in the Eastern Conference Standings to secure home field advantage through the first two rounds of the single-elimination postseason.
Memphis is led by their top goal-scorer Phillip Goodrum, who set the new high mark for goals in a season with his 21st score in the regular season finale last Saturday and finished second in the race for the golden boot. Alongside Goodrum is midfielder Aaron Molloy, who has set himself apart as one of the league’s best kicktakers with eight goals and 10 assists, tied for second in the USL Championship.
Memphis enters the first round of the postseason on a two-game win streak with a +4 goal differential in their final two regular season matches, most recently defeating FC Tulsa 3-0. Detroit City fell to the No. 7 seed with two losses in their final two regular season matches against Louisville City FC and Miami FC.
Memphis earned a 1-1 draw and a 2-1 victory in the two meetings between the clubs this season with Goodrum scoring a goal in both matches.
The winner of the matchup will advance to the Conference Semifinal round of the USL Championship Eastern Conference Playoffs. Fans can watch the action on ESPN+ and CW30.
“We know Detroit is an excellent squad. They’re well organized and well coached. They don’t hurt themselves. We’ve got to go above and beyond and be ready for 90 or 120-plus minutes and go from there. It’s one day at a time.” – Ben Pirmann
“I think we’re two of the most predictable teams in the league. They have a very strong system and defensive shape and structure. They have very excellent players, (Antoine) Hoppenot, Maxi (Rodriguez), Stephen Carroll, Nate Steinwasher is as good a goalkeeper as anyone in the league. They’ve just got very, very good players. There’s some predictability and familiarity there. I think it will be a 50-50 match. They’re really good. I think we’re really good as well. I think there will be three or four moments in the match that really decide it” – Ben Pirmann
“We’ve gone over Detroit’s phases where they can really make us suffer. You bring in that element, the emotion and drive and spirit and energy of the supporters. Hopefully, that’s something that can give us a boost. We might get tired, something might go against us and we’ll need the supporters. That’s something that’s huge for us. They’ve been animals all season long and we want to keep using that to our advantage to keep pushing on and advance to the next round.” – Ben Pirmann
“This is what we’ve played the entire season for and it’s win or go home. We’re motivated to have our best game this season. The past 34 games don’t matter.” – Leston Paul
“Nothing changes on our end and it hasn’t changed all season. We focus on ourselves and we know if we do things right, we’ll come out on top. Being at home for the playoffs was a goal that we had this year. It’s going to be fun to be here this Saturday. We’re absolutely excited. We’ll have the fans there and it’s huge for the city and the community. Us players are going to give it all and hopefully come out on top.” – Aaron Molloy
History in the Making..
2022 marks Memphis 901 FC’s most successful regular season in club history, surpassing the club records for points in a season (68), wins (21) and goals scored (65). Now, after securing their second consecutive playoff appearance, the Beale St. Boys are pushing to make more history with a playoff run. With the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference, Memphis guaranteed home field advantage through the first two rounds of the single-elimination postseason.
Memphis 901 FC has earned the reputation as one of the most dangerous offensive clubs in the league this season, especially at home. Memphis boasts a +18 goal differential and finished the regular season second in the league with 40 goals scored at home.
The Race for the Golden Boot…
Phillip Goodrum has been the jet fuel as the man up top for one of the most dangerous attacking teams in the league. The forward set a new club record for goals scored in a season (21) in the regular season finale on October 15. The Nashville native finished second in the golden boot race and was named Player of the Week twice this season. Memphis is unbeaten in 16 of the 17 matches Goodrum found the back of the net, including his first career hat trick in a 4-0 victory over Atlanta United 2 on September 7.
Goals Scored Leaderboard:
1 – Milan Iloski – 22
2 – Phillip Goodrum – 21
3 – Óttar Magnús Karlsson – 19
T3 – Leo Fernandes – 19
4 – Hadji Barry – 16
Memphis 901 FC boasts one of the league’s most dynamic duos in the midfield with Aaron Molloy and Jeremy Kelly. Molloy has made his hay as the squad’s primary kicktaker, tied for second in the USL with 10 assists. Kelly has been at the center of the 901 FC attack since moving from the back line this season, tied for fourth most assists in the USL with nine. Kelly was tabbed as the USL Championship Player of the Month in May after a stretch of three goals and three assists in four victories for 901 FC.
1 – Antoine Hoppenot – 11
T2 – Aaron Molloy – 10
T2 – Kenardo Forbes – 10
T4 – Jeremy Kelly – 9
T4 – Cameron Lindley – 9
T4 – Hadji Barry – 9
Set Piece Superstar…
Aaron Molloy has made his name as one of the most dangerous legs from the set piece in the USL Championship. Seven of the midfielder’s 10 assists this season have come off of the set piece, but not before scoring his first goal of the season on a free kick strike from 20 yards out against Oakland Roots on march 19. Molloy sits fifth in chances created with 72 this season and second in the league standings with his 10 assists.