Unbeaten in their last eight matches and looking for a franchise record sixth consecutive win, Memphis 901 FC has taken the USL Championship by storm with energetic offense and timely defending resulting in the best run of form in the club’s history.
The run comes at a perfect time for Bluff City soccer fans with the surging Beale St. Boys playing three home matches at AutoZone Park in a span of seven days starting on Saturday against Detroit City FC.
Last time out Memphis put together another comprehensive win, this time a 3-1 defeat of Louisville City FC at Lynn Family Stadium with goals from Nighte Pickering and Rodrigo da Costa.
The 18-year-old striker and veteran goal creator headline a Memphis attack that leads the league in scoring as the only side that averages over two goals per match and the only team yet to be shut out this season.
Memphis is undefeated in their three matches against Detroit with two victories, including a 3-1 result in the club’s first postseason win in 2022.
Detroit carries their own unbeaten streak of four games into Saturday’s fixture after a 3-1 victory over Hartford on Wednesday. Goals from Ben Morris and Skage Simonsen lifted Detroit to No. 8 in the Eastern Conference table.
Fans can purchase specialty sideline tickets and receive a 901 FC Pride T-Shirt with proceeds going toward LGBTQ+ non-profit Mid-South Pride. The match set for 7:30 p.m. CT will be broadcast on WMC Bounce 5.2 and ESPN+.
“The quality of Rodrigo and Emerson will be particularly helpful. We’ve been on a good roll but it’s important that we continue. You see teams that have a good spell and then tail off. We want to be right at the top right to the end. We need to do the work to do and the boys that have come here are here to help us do that and you see it in their performances.” – Stephen Glass
“We just look at the next one. We’ve had three-game weeks before and handled it really well. A lot of teams look to really rotate but our players have embraced it. There’s a big competition to start games and the boys that start them want to stay on the pitch.” – Stephen Glass
“The group’s already confident, they’re winning games and on a roll so it makes my life a little bit easier coming in. I know Coach Glass already. He knows what kind of levels I’m trying to reach already. I knew about the group just from watching games and I could see it had a lot of potential. It was a group I wanted to join and i’m really happy to be here.” – Emerson Hyndman
Memphis 901 FC holds the longest current win streak in the USL Championship with five victories going back to May 6. Memphis boasts a +10 goal differential during the streak.
A victory over Detroit on Saturday would mark a franchise record sixth straight victory, beating the five-match win streak from May 6 to June 4 in 2022.
On the Come Up
After two losses at home to start the season, Memphis 901 FC is undefeated in their last nine USL Championship matches with a +15 goal differential in that time span. The run is the longest unbeaten streak in club history.
Memphis is climbing up the Eastern Conference table at No.4 with 21 points and at least two games in hand over each of the top-3 clubs in the table.
Debut for da Costa
Versatile veteran Rodrigo da Costa joined Memphis 901 FC in a midseason acquisition, bringing his knack for scoring and distribution to one of the most dangerous attacking sides in the league.
The Brazilian international that holds FC Tulsa records for goals and assists made his first start for the Beale St. Boys and sealed the 3-1 victory in the 74th minute.
Top Leaguer to the Bluff City
Former top league midfielder Emerson Hyndman will be available to make his AutoZone Park debut for the Beale St. Boys after joining the club last week and playing 26 minutes in the victory over Louisville.
The Dallas, Texas native brings National Team, Scottish Premiership and MLS experience to a talented Memphis roster after playing a starting role for Head Coach Stephen Glass with Atlanta United.
Chances on Chances on Chances
Memphis now has two of the top creators in the league in Aaron Molloy and Rodrigo da Costa. Molloy and da Costa rank in the top-5 in chances created as Memphis stands toward the top in almost every offensive team metric.
Chances Created Leaderboard:
- Charlie Dennis – 38
- Aaron Molloy – 37
- Jack Gurr – 31
- Rodrigo da Costa – 29
The Kid is Cooking
Nighte Pickering has proven himself to be a dangerous presence near opposition final thirds. The 18-year-old striker has contributed to four goals his last three starts. Pickering leads the club along with Luiz Fernando and Rodrigo da Costa with four goals and two assists in USL competition along with his game-winning goal in the U.S. Open Cup victory over Atlanta United.
Pickering scored two goals in seven appearances in 2022, including a bicycle kick goal on debut, before being called up to the U.S. U-19 Youth National Team in the offseason.
Memphis leads the USL Championship in shots per 90 minutes and expected goals per match (2.00). The high powered offense is top-5 in final third entries and is the only club in the USL Championship to score a goal in every single regular season match this season.
Shots per 90 Leaderboard:
- Memphis – 15.40
- El Paso – 13.75
- San Antonio – 13.69