2021.10.16 @ DC-37

Nashville SC (6W-5L-5D, 23 pts.) is set to round out its Major League Soccer slate for the month of June on Saturday with a matchup against Eastern Conference foe D.C. United (4W-8L-2D, 14 pts.) on the road at Audi Field.  

The Boys in Gold are playing their first road match since beating Colorado Rapids 3-1 on May 28. Hany Mukhtar scored a brace in that match to guide Nashville to the victory.  

Nashville has found success against Eastern Conference opponents in 2022, producing results against every Eastern opponent this regular season (2W-0L-2D). 

Here’s everything you need to know about Saturday’s nationally-televised clash:  

Date: Saturday, June 25 
Time: 4:00 p.m. CT 
Location: Audi Field (Washington, D.C.) 
TV: ESPN, ESPN Deportes 
Web Stream: ESPN.com 
English Radio: iHeartRadio Online, Nashville SC App 
Spanish Radio: El Jefe 96.7 FM 
Watch Party pres. by Heineken: Lost Paddy

Bounce Back – Nashville SC is coming off a 2-1 defeat against Sporting Kansas City at GEODIS Park on Sunday, the club’s first home loss in 592 days.  

Head Coach Gary Smith says the team’s veteran leaders have stepped up and helped guide the team as it looks to bounce back. 

“Every team that you want to look at, the successful ones have strong leaders, strong characters and a senior group of players that set standards and keep people accountable,” Smith said. “Whilst they’re hurt and disappointed about the weekend’s result, they understand that it wasn’t the end of the world. It isn’t the end of the world. The best teams bounce back quickly and they get themselves moving again and back to a positive mindset. That really has been the focus this week.” 

Loba’s Look – Entering as a substitute in the second half of Sunday’s loss, forward Aké Loba got himself on the score sheet with a goal to cut the deficit to 2-1. The Ivorian followed up midfielder Hany Mukhtar’s shot attempt and rocketed the rebound into the back of the net.  

It was Loba’s first goal at GEODIS Park and second across all competitions this season. Smith said Loba has been trending in the right direction with his recent performances.  

“I’m not sure there could have been anyone happier that he scored,” Smith said. “It was not easy. He’s coming in late on that counterattack, but plenty of bodies throwing themselves across the goal and asking some questions of how he finished. Really pleased that he was able to get himself on the sheet. I think over the last two appearances, we’ve seen some really bright patches in his play. [He has to] make sure now that he’s able to follow that up and reinforce that across the next three games in a week for sure.” 

Scouting D.C. United – This will be Nashville SC’s first and only matchup against D.C. United this season. Last season, Nashville beat D.C. 5-2 at home on Aug. 15 and drew 0-0 on the road on Oct. 16.  

This season, D.C. have a new interim head coach in Chad Ashton and a new Designated Player in Greek midfielder Taxiarchis Fountas. This season, Fountas has five goals, second only to forward Ola Kamara for the team lead with six goals.  

Smith said he is looking forward to a tough matchup against attackers like Fountas.  

“I would expect one of the most competitive games this weekend, especially in D.C.,” Smith said. “They’re a very positive and aggressive side. They play quickly and play with momentum. They’re very proactive. It’s a tough matchup and one that we’ll have to be at our best for.”