United FC gameday
7 P.M. VS. FORT LAUDERDALE • CH. 45
NATIONAL SPORTS CENTER STADIUM, BLAINE
Preview: The spring season finale also marks the last North American Soccer League match for United FC midfielder Miguel Ibarra. His transfer to Club Leon of Mexican professional league Liga MX was announced earlier this week.
United FC at a glance: Eliminated from the spring season title chase last week, the Loons (3-1-5) sit in fourth place. It is a spot they must fight to keep, however: The top four teams from the combined spring and fall season qualify for the playoffs. Minnesota is on a seven-match unbeaten streak and is tied for the league lead with five draws. “We’ve dropped some points while playing well,” United FC coach Manny Lagos (above) said. “It’s important to get a result Saturday.” The match figures to be emotional for Ibarra, a fan favorite and reigning NASL most valuable player.
Fort Lauderdale at a glance: Already languishing at the bottom of the league standings, the Strikers (1-3-5) saw their soccer director and head coach both resign earlier this week. Interim coach Iván Guerrero is the club’s third head coach in less than one year. Last week the Strikers scored their first goal in four league matches.
DAVID LA VAQUE