Frequent contributor Jon Marthaler has written about virtually every sport in the Twin Cities, and fills in on Saturdays for the RandBall blog on StarTribune.com. He'll cover the professional soccer scene in the Twin Cities, whether at the Metrodome or at the National Sports Center.
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Minnesota United opened their season on Saturday with an impressive 2-0 win at San Antonio. Christian Ramirez scored his first goal of the season in the first half, an excellent spinning effort from the penalty spot, and defender Kevin Venegas added the second from a second-half free kick.
You can watch the two goals, along with a clip of San Antonio defender Julius James getting himself sent off for shoving United's Tiago Calvano, from the team's 90-second-long highlights package:
If 90 seconds is too long for you: here's a GIF of Ramirez's goal.
The win gave United an unambiguously positive start to the season, something that's in demand in the nine-game first-half sprint in the NASL. Only New York, who destroyed Atlanta 4-0 on Sunday, had a better beginning to the year.
Fort Lauderdale beat Ottawa 2-0 as well, leaving United tied for second in the table after one week of play. In the other two games, Indy and Carolina tied 1-1 in front of more than 11,000 Indianapolis fans, and Tampa Bay was held to a 1-1 draw at home by Edmonton, the reigning champions of the 1-1 draw.
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