Reds Roll Past FC Cougars in Friendly
EUGENE — The Red Aces signature red smoke rose from the south bleachers just 10 minutes into the first half Friday night at the Les Schwab Sports Park, a sign of things to come for Lane United as the match went on.
Anthony Macchione put away a left-footed chip over FC Cougars goalkeeper Enrique Rueda for the first goal of the night on the way to a 4-0 friendly victory for the Reds over the local Liga Unida side.
Lane United head coach John Galas and the the Reds weren’t happy with the way they showed last time out in a 4-1 defeat at Victoria Highlanders FC Sunday and Galas stressed the need for quality possession and effort back at home this week.
“We scored early, but it took us awhile to get going after that as I thought we kinda went through the motions,” Galas said.”The sense of urgency had to be picked up for us to get comfortable. First and foremost we needed to stay in rhythm for next week when the league season resumes, but we also wanted to see some different combinations and we were able to do that tonight.”
The Reds got a spark from an influx of new arrivals this week as goalkeeper Ximo Miralles from Clemson University, midfielder Brandon Zambrano from the University of Portland and midfielder Isaiah Jackson of Gonzaga University all made their Lane United debuts Friday.
Zambrano started the match and found himself involved in several chances in the first half, recording an assist and shot in 45 minutes. Miralles and Jackson came on at the half and both contributed as Miralles made an acrobatic diving save to his left on a strike from Luis Almazar and Jackson put in a rebound from eight yards out for Lane United’s third goal.
“It was good to see Ximo called into action a little bit after just coming in yesterday,” Galas said. “That’s the nature of the PDL, guys have to come in and get acclimated instantly because it’s such a quick season. I thought Isaiah did well and integrated well with the group after being here just a few days. Pieces of the puzzle are being put in place which is nice.”
The goal of the night came from Miralles’ twin brother, midfielder Jaime Miralles who hit a clinical strike from 28 yards out, knocking a curling shot into the upper left corner past an outstretched FC Cougars keeper Enrique Rueda that put Lane United up 2-0. For Miralles the night was about getting better and preparing for a rematch against TSS FC Rovers next week.
“Tonight was a great opportunity to build some chemistry and work on things we were missing last weekend,” Miralles said. “We had some new faces and it was the first time we were playing together. There are no more excuses next week, we need to put everything together and start getting points.”
The Reds scoring was rounded out by forward Jordan Jones in the 81st minute, who rebounded his own shot inside the box and put away his third goal of the season making it 4-0.
Lane United will have the opportunity to move up the Northwest Division standings when TSS Rovers visit the Les Schwab Sports Park on May 26. Rovers defeated 2016 PDL runner-up Calgary Foothills FC 2-1 Friday night, creating an opening for the Reds.
“We need to do better than how we performed up there last weekend,” Miralles said. “We tied, we lost and we’re not happy with that. Not happy with it at all. We’ll be ready to go from the start through the end this time.”