While we here at the False 9 primarily focus on our beloved boys in Verde & Black, we also have a responsibility to keep you, our loyal readers, informed on the rest of the league. But instead of reasoned analysis about matchups, I am offering you something different.
Who should you, an Austin FC fan, cheer for this week? Let’s discuss!
New England Revolution vs FC Dallas – Saturday @ 12:30 p.m. (ESPN+)
Do I need to give directions here? Whooooaaaa F*ck Dallas, F*ck Frisco!
The Side: New England Revolution
Toronto FC vs New York Red Bulls – Saturday @ 1:00 p.m. (ESPN+)
This game feels odd. I really don’t have a reason to dislike either club. It’s a game that exists and will have no impact on Austin’s chances of making the playoffs. However, Toronto failed in its mission to crush the Toros last week in Frisco as they came away with only a draw, therefore we smite them to oblivion this week.
The Side: New York Red Bulls
Sporting KC vs Houston Dynamo – Saturday @ 2:30 p.m. (Univision, TUDN, & Twitter)
In reality, we want a draw here. SKC is a playoff contender, so anytime they drop points is helpful to ATX. However its early in the season, so………..whoooaaaa F*ck the Houston Dynamo!
The Side: Sporting KC
CF Montreal vs Philadelphia Union – Saturday @ 3:00 p.m. (ESPN+)
Another game where I don’t have strong feelings either way. So it comes down to the gut in an epic battle: Poutine vs the Philly Cheese Steak. GAH I LOVE THEM BOTH!
The Side: A delicious, messy draw…and a beer to wash it all down
San Jose Earthquakes vs Columbus Crew – Saturday @ 4:30 p.m. (ESPN+)
On paper, we should want Columbus to win this game. The Crew, an Eastern Conference squad, are taking on a Western Conference foe in San Jose. Seems easy, right? There’s just one tiny problem with this train of logical thought: it’s Columbus. I don’t particularly like Columbus.
The Side: San Jose Earthquakes
Chicago Fire vs Orlando City – Saturday @ 5:00 p.m. (ESPN+)
You may not know that a long, long time ago, when Austin was but a wee town few had ever heard of (i.e. 2010), Orlando City’s club played here and was known as the Austin Aztex. So that may incline me to push your support towards the Sunshine State. However, Chicago is a masterclass of MLS insanity, having played in Soldier Field only to build a soccer specific stadium only to move back to Soldier Field, all while rolling out a widely hated rebrand which forced the front office back to the drawing table. Their essence is beautiful chaos.
The Side: Chicago Fire
Colorado Rapids vs Atlanta United – Saturday @ 5:00 p.m. (ESPN+)
Ahhh DenVERDE, how I love thee. The site of Austin FC’s first ever win will always hold a special place in my heart. This week Atlanta United visits the Rocky Mountains as they look to get back-to-back victories over Western Conference foes to start the year, which invariably helps Austin. Did I mention that the Five Stripes also have the other Teen Wolff? Family supports family.
The Side: Atlanta United
FC Cincinnati vs D.C. United – Saturday @ 5:00 p.m. (ESPN+)
It’s easy to feel bad for FC Cincinnati. After their Opening Day loss at Q2 Stadium, the media narrative has been one of “Same Ole Cincy”. Their fan base deserves more. A win over an MLS original Saturday night would go a long way towards giving them hope. And selfishly, a Knifey-Lions victory makes last week’s shellacking look all the more impressive for Austin FC.
The Side: FC Cincinnati
Minnesota United vs Nashville SC – Saturday @ 5:00 p.m. (ESPN+)
From a pure soccer perspective, this game is wildly intriguing. The Coyotes are pulling an Austin this season by hitting the road for their first eight games while their new home is finished up. They started off in fine style Sunday with a win at Seattle and look like a potential juggernaut who is a no doubt, highly seeded playoff squad. Meanwhile Minnesota started their campaign with a 1-1 draw at Philadelphia and feel like a team who will be in that middle-tier Western Conference playoff mix, meaning we need them to drop points at every turn.
The Side: Nashville SC
Real Salt Lake vs Seattle Sounders – Saturday @ 5:00 p.m. (ESPN+)
RSL disappointed us all with an immensely boring Week 1 draw at Houston. Seriously, The Golden Girls saw more action in 30 minutes than that game did in 90. Now RSL heads home to host an angry Seattle squad. A draw would be lovely, but if I’m being honest, I want to see RSL punished for their sins last week.
The Side: Seattle Sounders
Vancouver Whitecaps vs NYCFC – Saturday @ 5:00 p.m. (ESPN+)
Two teams coming off of a loss on the road to start the year will meet at BC Place looking for points. If a game could ever be summed in one word, its this one. Meh.
The Side: If a game happens and no one watches, does it actually happen?
Charlotte FC vs L.A. Galaxy – Saturday @ 6:30 p.m. (FOX)
Over 70,000 fans are expected to pack Bank of America Stadium as Charlotte FC plays their first ever home match vs the five time MLS Cup champion L.A. Galaxy. A Charlotte win directly helps Austin in the standings, plus they should have ATX native McKenzie Gaines in the starting lineup. You remember what he did the last time he played against the Galaxy, right?
The Side: Charlotte FC
LAFC vs Portland Timbers – Sunday @ 9:00 p.m. (FS1)
MLS After Dark returns with a vengeance to finish off the weekend. LAFC smacked Colorado to start the year while the Timbers played an entertaining 2-2 draw against the Revolution. The best thing for Austin FC would be a Timbers win or a draw. The best thing for the everyone is typical MLS After Dark insanity. We’re going with the latter option while hopefully still being sufficiently drunk and happy following an afternoon victory at Q2.
The Side: Hell-fire Elmo