There are some truly great midfielders in the USL Championship right now. But as we’ve seen in the start to the 2020 season, there’s still only one Kenardo Forbes.
“He’s just a special player,” said Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC Head Coach Bob Lilley on Monday to reporters. “He’s comfortable playing deep because he likes to set the game for his teammates, but he’s also one of those players that he’s making the right decisions at the right time, and his awareness of space and where we’re going to be effective, a lot of the time he’s making those decisions.
“Sometimes I’m picking up something and relaying it, and he’s very good at doing those things, but a lot of the time he does it with feel, and I trust him as a player to solve problems out there on the field.”
Forbes’ ability to orchestrate has been in evidence since he first arrived in the Championship five years ago on Lilley’s Rochester Rhinos. In the time since, he’s become one of the most respected players in the league, earning All-League honors three times while racking up bigger and bigger numbers each year.
Now, the Jamaican is on the verge of becoming the Championship’s all-time leader in regular season assists, with his three-helper game on Saturday night against the Philadelphia Union II – just the 18th such performance in league history – putting him on 35 assists for his career. That puts him alongside former Charlotte legend Jorge Herrera and only two back of Maikel Chang as the Hounds get ready to host Indy Eleven on Wednesday night on ESPN2 in the club’s 2020 opener at Highmark Stadium.
As his first lieutenant on the field, Lilley is certainly happy to have one of the best in the Championship marshalling the squad.
“I see him talking more on the field now,” said Lilley. “Rather than just be a quiet leader, he’s also able to vocalize certain things that need to be done with players around him, and it’s a big help, especially when you have a lot of turnover in your roster to have a player in your roster who knows what you want as a coach and is able to make those players around him better because he’s constantly playing well, but also helping guys around him make the right decisions and giving them the information they need to be successful.”
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- Sacramento Republic FC’s Rafael Jauregui made club history in Sunday’s victory against Reno 1868 FC, becoming the youngest player to appear in a Championship game for the club at the age of 15 years and seven months old. Indomitable City Soccer caught up with the youngster after Republic FC’s win.