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Nashville SC CEO Ian Ayre spoke with media virtually ahead of Sunday’s match against Major League Soccer newcomers Austin FC. The highly-anticipated match will be the first near-full capacity crowd at Nissan Stadium since Feb. 29, 2020 when the club hosted its inaugural MLS home opener against Atlanta United FC.

The Boys in Gold are currently on a five-game unbeaten streak and one of only three undefeated teams in MLS.

Here is what Ayre had to say ahead of Sunday’s showdown in Music City at 8:00 p.m. CT.

On a near-full crowd returning to Nissan Stadium…

“There’s so much energy, and it’s kind of strange. We’re coming in with five games behind us, unbeaten, but to some degree with the changes in capacity and the first opportunity to get closer to what we’d all recognize as some level of normality, it almost feels like a season opener again.”

On multi-platinum-selling singer/songwriter Jordan Davis performing at halftime...

“We said that we wanted to create a kind of festival event of entertainment on game day. We introduced our Gibson Guitar Riff which has been hugely popular. So, in that same tradition, one of the things that exists in Nissan is that stage we do the riff on. We thought what better opportunity than to bring live music in at halftime. It’s a really great opportunity to have [Davis] come play from his new album. A lot of his fans, I’m sure, will be really keen to get out and see live music and live performances again. So, combining music from Music City and soccer, I hope it just adds to the overall entertainment value of Sunday night.”

On the team’s strong start to the season...

“It feels great that we’re unbeaten after five games. We feel excited about coming back home to Nissan [Stadium] on Sunday and seeing the fruits of all that work, putting those together against Austin, who’ve had a reasonably good start, as well.”

On MLS newcomers Austin FC…

“I was lucky to go down there a couple of weeks ago and spend some time with their people, and their coach, and they’re a good team. I personally like the way they’ve approached joining MLS, which I think has some similarities to us. We’re very different, and we’re each our own club with our own strategy, but I think it will make a very interesting and exciting fixture on Sunday night.”

On construction progress at the new Nashville SC Stadium coming in 2022...

“The stadium is on track, on time, on budget, and tracking really well. I was on a call very early this morning seeing some of the latest images of that. They’re pouring secondary levels of concrete on the steelwork. On the club side of the stadium, there’s so much buildout. From when we had the media day there, it’s almost unrecognizable. We had some of The Backline Supporters’ group out there on Monday night to come and see it, but also to see the area where they’ll stand. All of the slab and all of the concrete has now been poured in the lower levels of the stadium. So, we’re feeling hugely encouraged about how that’s going. Weather’s been good. Contractor’s been outstanding. So, only good things to report.”

On interest surrounding Nashville SC’s new stadium...

“We’re blown away by the interest. The Premier Club is sold out; the Loge Club is sold out. The WeHo Club and the Goal Post Club, the most recent premium products on sale, are 40% sold out, and that’s before they’ve even gone on sale to the general public. So, it’s moving in the right direction. It’s moving at the right speed. And the energy and demand for it is incredible, so we’re hugely pleased with it.”

For the full lineup of Sunday’s matchday festivities, visit NashvilleSC.com/EveryoneBackN.

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