Memphis 901 FC’s stretch of three games in seven days continues on Wednesday night as they host FC Tulsa at AutoZone Park.
The Beale St. Boys put their 10-game unbeaten streak on the line as they battle a strong Tulsa side looking to play spoiler from the bottom of the Eastern Conference table.
Memphis sits at No. 4 in the Eastern Conference with a 6-2-4 record and one of the most overwhelming offenses in the USL Championship. 901 FC ranks in the top-5 of almost every offensive statistic and leads the league in goals per match despite being held scoreless for the first time this season last Saturday.
Tulsa sits at No. 10 in the conference carrying a 2-6-7 record into the mid-week matchup. Memphis grabbed a 2-1 victory in Tulsa on May 19 with goals from Nighte Pickering and Aaron Molloy, giving 901 FC one of their five wins in the past six matches.
Both teams will have a different look, however, from the first matchup between the two clubs with the top goal scoring threats Rodrigo da Costa and Phillip Goodrum switching sides after a mid-season transaction that saw Memphis acquire da Costa along with a transfer fee for Goodrum.
“I’m sure it’s a weird moment for both,” Assistant Coach Caleb Patterson-Sewell said. “They’re both very big players for their ex-clubs and now they’re facing off with their new clubs so it’ll be a special moment for both of them. Really i think you’ll see two good teams playing a game of soccer and hopefully we’ll come out on top with three points.”
Kickoff for the Wednesday matchup is set for 7 p.m. CT. Fans can stream the match live on ESPN+ and watch on WMC Bounce 5.2 locally.
“The core group is very strong. New players understand what’s required to be on the team. Once the team starts winning games, it’s tough to get into the team, so players don’t want to come out of it. The competition that you see on the training pitch translates to games.” – Stephen Glass
“They’ll both be a little bit emotional, I would guess on both sides of the coin. They both had great times at the clubs that they left and they’re both looking forward to what’s left with their new clubs. It’ll be nice to see Phillip, he was brilliant for the club when he was here. He was first class. We welcome him back, but we hope he gets beat and it’s the same thing as when any former player comes.” – Stephen Glass
“We just go week to week and game to game. I think that’s the experience of the group. They don’t want to get carried away. It’s easy when you’re doing well and people start thinking about the future and what’s to come instead of thinking about the day to day grind. Our guys have kept their foot on the pedal.” – Caleb Patterson-Sewell
On the Come Up
After two losses at home to start the season, Memphis 901 FC is undefeated in their last 10 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 22 points and at least two games in hand over each of the top-3 clubs in the table.
Score One for the New Guy
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 – 39
- Aaron Molloy – 37
- Jack Gurr – 34
- Rodrigo da Costa – 31
The Kid is Cooking
Nighte Pickering has proven himself to be a dangerous presence near opposition final thirds. Pickering leads the club along with Luiz Fernando and Rodrigo da Costa with four goals to go with three 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 – 14.25
- El Paso – 13.87
- San Antonio – 13.60