What to watch for in Nashville SC’s road clash vs. Inter Miami CF

Daniel Ríos vs. Inter Miami CF, 8.30.20

NASHVILLE - Nashville Soccer Club (2W-4L-2D) hits the road for the final time in phase one of the 2020 Major League Soccer restart on Sunday night for a matchup against Inter Miami CF (1W-6L-1D). 

Just a week ago, the Boys in Gold earned their first home win in MLS against Inter Miami 1-0 at Nissan Stadium thanks to a world-class strike by midfielder Anibal Godoy. Inter Miami will be seeking to even the record against a fellow 2020 expansion side. 

Here’s everything you need to know about this Sunday’s nationally-televised match:

Date: Sunday, Sept. 6
Time: 7:00 p.m. CT
Location: Inter Miami CF Stadium
TV: Fox Sports 1
Stream:Fox Sports App/FoxSports.com
English Radio: ESPN 94.9
Spanish Radio: El Jefe 96.7
Broadcast FAQs

Stars Emerging  - Nashville SC’s goal in Wednesday night’s 1-1 draw with Orlando City SC came from a link-up between midfielder Hany Mukhtar and winger Randall Leal. Head Coach Gary Smith hopes two of his most creative attackers will continue to find chemistry and produce on offense. 

Leal thinks that goal was only the beginning of a great on-field relationship. 

“It’s good,” Leal said. “We try to find each other in training, and now we want to do it in the games. It was difficult in a new team, but now we are training more together.  I know more about him and he knows more about me. It’s good for the team.” 

Measuring Up Matuidi - Inter Miami CF head coach Diego Alonso indicated this week that newly-acquired midfielder Blaise Matuidi will be available to play in Sunday’s match after joining the team for training for the first time on Friday. 

The former Juventus stalwart and 2018 FIFA World Cup champion would provide an instant boost to the Inter Miami lineup. The Nashville coach is ready for the challenge of potentially facing such a talented and experienced player. 

“I have to presume that whatever shape they’ve been playing, it was in readiness for Matuidi to come into that group,” Smith said. That being said, there’s a hell of a difference one individual can make, especially the caliber of this player. Even if he’s not on the field to begin with, I think his presence around the locker room, the fact that he’s on the training field, will give everyone else a lift. I think we’ll feel that element of their team.”

Willis Wall - Through eight matches this season, goalkeeper Joe Willis has put up three clean sheets. That matches his total from the entirety of his 2019 season with the Houston Dynamo. 

Smith is extremely happy with how his starting goalkeeper has looked thus far and hopes he can continue his symbiotic relationship with the defenders in front of him. 

“Joe is a big man anyways, but I do feel he’s warming to his role not just on the field but off it,” Smith said. “He’s a terrific character, and we’re starting to see the qualities and the signs of the individual we knew was a good addition to the group. He’s getting better and better game by game. All I can hope is with a strong backline and group in front of him, it’s not only giving him confidence but he’s likewise doing to the group.”