Memphis 901 FC forward Phillip Goodrum will look to lead his side to its first playoff victory as the side hosts Detroit City FC at AutoZone Park on Saturday night. | Photo courtesy Eric Glemser / Memphis 901 FC
MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Detroit City FC will make its USL Championship Playoffs debut on Saturday night with a familiar face in the opposing dugout as Memphis 901 FC looks for its first postseason victory after the best regular season in its history. Kickoff for the clash in the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals of the 2022 USL Championship Playoffs presented by Hisense at AutoZone Park is set for 8 p.m. ET.
No. 2-seed Memphis set club records with 21 victories, 67 goals and 11 shutouts in the regular season as it earned a second consecutive trip to the postseason under Head Coach Ben Pirmann. Individual club records also fell, with Phillip Goodrum recording 21 goals for a club single-season high to rank second in the Championship while Aaron Molloy’s 10 assists were also a new 901 FC single-season best. Both Goodrum and Molloy found the net as Memphis sealed the No. 2 seed this past Saturday night with a 3-0 victory against FC Tulsa, and the side took a 2-0 victory when Detroit last visited AutoZone Park on June 25 when Goodrum and Graham Smith were on the scoresheet.
No. 7 seed DCFC heads south after a standout first season in the second tier of American soccer, with Head Coach Trevor James’ squad merging previously established talent at the club with experienced Championship campaigners to create a postseason-worthy squad. James succeeded Pirmann as Le Rouge’s Head Coach prior to the 2019 season, and his side featured numerous standout performers this season led by veteran forward Antoine Hoppenot, who earned his first Assists Champion award in the league with 11 assists in the regular season. Detroit is coming off a 1-0 setback to Miami FC in its home finale last Saturday afternoon at Keyworth Stadium that dropped it into seventh place in the East. That marked the first time Le Rouge had lost consecutive games this season after a road loss to Louisville City FC the prior weekend, and with the season now on the line the visitors will be hoping to rebound and spring an upset.
55 – Fifty-five percent of Memphis’ goals came in the first half of games this season. The side scored at least 10 goals in each of the 15-minute segments of the period, the only team in the Championship to do so.
12 – Detroit City FC conceded only 12 goals in the first half of games this season, the fewest of any side in the Championship, but was also held scoreless in the first half in 22 of 34 regular season contests.
Players to Watch
Memphis 901 FC – Phillip Goodrum: The Tennessee native set a club record with 21 goals in the regular season and was rated as the best all-around striker in the league, finishing the season with a +12.52 Goals Added mark to lead the Championship.
Detroit City FC – Deklan Wynne: The New Zealand international led DCFC outfield players with 2,850 minutes of action in the regular season and his dynamic two-way play on the flank saw him record three goals and seven assists.
538.com Match Predictor: Memphis 901 FC 69%, Detroit City FC 31%