Your Friday jetset pack of ten soccer matches to Track comes a little more raw today. No formatting, no proofreading, no wacky images or inane blathering (OK, less).
And our Friday couldn’t get started in more awesome fashion than with the return of…
Rio Grande Valley vs. Saint Louis – USL
Last year’s 11th place team from the Western Conferences plays the #12 club from the East. Ho hum. But it means the return of American Division Two soccer is here!
What a strange year it will be. We will meet some teams new to the league. And it wlll be the only second-tier league. The North American Soccer League cancelled its 2018 season after losing its lawsuit to be co-sanctioned by NSSF as Division Two.
To learn more about what happened regarding and generally about the NASL, far and away the most informative source a Noobite could visit is D-Twosdays Interviews link on this site. Noob interviewed over a dozen different people, mostly on the NASL-side of D-Two. They’re so unreal, you won’t believe they’re real! At all…
B. Puebla vs. Santos – Liga MX
6th place hosts the leaders here in the Clausura (second half-season). They finished 14th and 15th in the Apertura. What’s they’re secret? Ramped up offense. 11 games in, and they’ve both met or exceeded their goal output from the previous 17-game campaign. At Puebla, Noob sees this as a toss-up.
RESULT: Santos 0-1
Dundalk vs. Waterford – Irish Premier
Dundalk have yet to concede a goal five games into the season, and have scored nearly two per game themselves. Yet they’re in 3rd place. Waterford are #B. freshly-minted from the second division last year.
RESULT: Dundalk 1-0 Dundalk pulls up into a tie for #B with Waterford (and ahead on GD)
T.N.S. vs. Bala Town – Welsh Premier
TNS will again be the Welsh champs. Bala Town are in a three-way dogfight for automatic invitation to the next Europa League that comes with finishing #B. They’re goal differential is zero. Gritty, gutty, but with little seeming hope today.
RESULT: TNS 3-0
Monaco vs. Lille – Ligue 1
PSG ended up running away and hiding from the rest of the league. But whichever club finishes #B gets an automatic Champions League berth, too. That’s AS Monaco right now. But their lead is narrow over #3 Marseille. 3rd place will qualify for C.L., too, but have to start play in an earlier round.
Lille are in second-to-last place, so Noob has us Tracking this as a possible “Hiccup Watch” match. Monaco should win by a couple goals.
RESULT: Monaco 2-1
Ried vs. Wacker innsbruck – Austria Football First League
Welcome to the Track, second-division Austrian football! Top two will be automatically promoted into the country’s Bundesliga. The 3rd-place finisher will have a playoff with a bottom-rung Bundesliga club for a spot in the top-flight next season as well.
Ried is in a tie for 1st. Innsbruck are just two points back of them, and have two teams hot on their own heels just another point behind. Ried scores a lot more and plays nearly as good of defense, should take care of business at home today.
RESULT: innsbruck 1-3 Turns out a primary source of mine was out of date. Innsbruck was in 1st by two points already. Ried is in 4th.
Paradise vs. Notre Dame: – Barbados Premier
Last year’s #4 and #5 clubs do battle! Their season is just beginning.
Fun Fact: Paradise FC are from Dover, next to St. Lawrence Gap. That’s the country’s famous mile-ish- long touristy stretch of hotels and bars in the country.
RESULT: Paradise 2-0 It appears this match may have been played 3/15
Extension Gunners vs. Shooting Stars – Botswana Premier
Noob’s not exactly sure where this league ranks in Africa. But CAF does not list it in its top 18 at the very least. Football hinterland. These two are a coupe of midtable teams, 8th and 7th place.
Fun Fact: Extension Gunner’s hometown of Lobatse nearly became the capital when the national gained independence from Great Britain. Instead, it became home for the judicial system.
RESULT: Gunners 2-1
Binh Duong vs. Nam Dinh – Vietnam V.League 1
This league’s season is just starting. Last year’s 11th-place finisher plays host to a newly-promoted team.
Fun Fact: Due to its strong financial backing, Binh Duong is knows as “the Chelsea of Vietnam”.
RESULT: Binh Duong 2-1
Khujand vs. Khatlon – Tajikistan Tajik League
Given how little money the country has for its international team to travel, I’m surprised to find this is almost a top-ten league in Asian. Here, too, the season very young. This is last year’s #B versus I couldn’t find anything on them quickly-team! Noob’s guess is they were promoted form a lower division for this year.
RESULT: Khujund 2-1