Match Preview: MOBA Heads to Nashville for Season Opener
At long last, the season is finally here. The road to the PDL Championship has already been paved, and all that remains is for Peachtree City MOBA to start driving. First stop: Nashville, Tennessee. Opening the 2017 PDL season, MOBA takes on Nashville SC U23 at Vanderbilt Stadium in what has turned into quite the exciting matchup.
The pre-season for MOBA was not what anybody expected. Following a 3-9-2 season in 2016, MOBA wanted to get themselves on track, and that started in the pre-season. It was without question that Peachtree City was projected to be a better team than last season, however few suspected them to be quite as good as they started. Starting against an experienced NPSL side in Georgia Revolution FC with a home and home series, followed up by one of the best adult teams in Georgia in the East Point Pumas of Liga MAGG. Heading to Hampton, MOBA surprised the PDL, NPSL, and the soccer community, as they knocked off the Revs 3-0, with goals by Santiago Moore and Todd Fidler. Coming back home, Peachtree City had to be excited for what was to come, and their success carried over, as they beat the Revs again, this time by a score of 7-1. MOBA knew, at this point, that they had a good team, but that talent would be put to the test when they took on a new team. Facing the Pumas at home, Peachtree City found themselves down early after the Pumas scored off a penalty in the eighth minute. Coach Harms and his men would bounce back, as they put four past the keeper in the following seventy minutes, winning 4-2 and completing their first ever perfect pre-season. Heading to Nashville, MOBA surely has found a new sense of confidence following last year's struggles, however success will not come easy, as they take on expansion side Nashville SC U23, a team that came out of the gates just as strong as MOBA.
Nashville SC, a USL expansion side that will begin play in 2018, announced in 2016 they had plans to create an amateur team to compete in the PDL in 2017. The U23's took on Memphis City FC in their only pre-season game before the season opener, beating Memphis 4-1 in what was a surprising upset following Memphis' success last year. A lot of hype has been built around the matchup between these two teams, as Tennessee will be getting their first taste of Nashville SC soccer as they hope to become one of the MLS's expansion sides in the coming years. This is not the first time Peachtree City has taken on a team from Nashville at Vanderbilt Stadium, however, as they played a friendly against Nashville FC of the NPSL last season, losing 1-0 in MOBA's first match as team. Following the 2016 season, Nashville FC, along with their colors and crest, were bought out by Nashville SC in exchange for 1% equity and a voting seat on the team board.
Keys to Victory
- Battle in the Box: Despite only playing one game in preparation, Nashville proved that they are a capable attacking team that can strike at any moment. Throughout the pre-season, Peachtree City's defense proved they are nothing less than a impenetrable wall, and they will need that strength in Nashville if they hope to get the three points on the road.
- Score: It is without question that scoring goals is what leads to victory, and that is no doubt a key to success not just for Saturday, but for the whole season. MOBA will need to keep up the attacking pressure for the full ninety minutes, and so far, they have been doing just that.
The PDL is the number one amateur league in the United States, and every team goes out on the pitch with a mission to win. Every point will be crucial in the South Atlantic Division during 2017, and Peachtree City will need to get off to a strong start if they hope to battle for a division title. The season kicks off Saturday, May 13th at 8:00 PM at Vanderbilt Stadium in Nashville, Tennessee. Following that match, MOBA heads to Statesboro to take on in-state rival South Georgia Tormenta FC on May 18th, before coming home for the first time in 2017 to take on Mississippi Brilla FC. Season tickets are still on sale for $80 with youth season tickets costing $55. VIP season tickets are on sale for $325 with youth tickets costing $215. Single game tickets for all eight home matches are on sale for $15 with youth and group (10+) tickets costing $10. Flex plans are available, giving you access to five of MOBA's eight home matches. Get your tickets NOW at MOBASoccer.com/Tickets!