First Touches 8_9

First Touches did not get selected for the MLS All-Star Game this year, but it’s keeping to the grind and getting ready for Minnesota United’s trip to Nashville this weekend as the Loons reunite with the team who they last saw for their home opener this season.

  • Minnesota and Nashville shared the spoils in Week 2 this season, with a 1-1 draw at Allianz Field featuring goals from Hassani Dotson and C.J. Sapong.
  • This will be Minnesota’s first trip to GEODIS Park; Minnesota’s only previous trip to Nashville was a 2020 game at Nissan Stadium, a 0-0 draw.
  • As the above two points allude to, a Minnesota-Nashville game has never yet resulted in a winner, with an acknowledged small sample size.
  • Minnesota had a season-best seven game undefeated streak snapped with their 4-3 loss against Colorado last weekend.
  • Nashville also endured a 4-3 defeat last weekend, theirs being against Toronto. The loss marked Nashville’s fifth straight match without a win (0-2-3).
  • Nashville sits sixth in the West on 33 points, just two points behind Minnesota in fourth with 35.
  • Both Nashville and Minnesota have allowed 34 total goals on the season.
  • Nashville has been caught offside 54 times this season, second most of any team in MLS (Chicago has the most with 62 times).
  • Nashville is one of several teams tied for second in the league with eight headed goals this season.
  • Nashville has the highest headed duel win percentage (57.8%) of any MLS team.
  • Minnesota and Nashville combine to feature four MLS All-Stars: Emanuel Reynoso and Dayne St. Clair for Minnesota, and Hany Mukhtar and Walker Zimmerman for Nashville.
  • Mukhtar has featured in the Golden Boot race all season, and is currently tied for third in MLS with 13 goals to his name (Austin’s Sebastián Driussi leads all players with 16 goals).
  • Luis Amarilla’s goal on Saturday was his eighth of the season, leaving him just one goal behind Reynoso for the Minnesota team lead.
  • Mukhtar and Amarilla are two of the 25 players in the league with more than 0.7 goals per 90 minutes.
  • Mukhtar and Amarilla also lead their respective teams in assists, with Amarilla tied on four assists with Bongokuhle Hlongwane.
  • Brent Kallman’s goal on Saturday was his first of the season, and fifth total in his six MLS years in Minnesota.
  • Nashville’s three goals on Saturday came from their three top scorers on the season in Mukhtar, Zimmerman and Teal Bunbury. No Nashville players other than those three have more than two goals on the season.

Minnesota Connections

  • Before returning to Minnesota, Abu Danladi spent both of his previous two seasons in Nashville.
  • Old friend Eric Miller played for Minnesota in 2018 and 2019, and is originally from Woodbury, MN. He and Brent Kallman played at both Woodbury and Creighton University together, though Miller is a couple of years younger. To go even further, Miller is married to Kallman’s sister, so they’re literally related.
  • Tyler Miller and Walker Zimmerman were cornerstones of LAFC’s first two MLS seasons, and both departed after the 2019 season for their current teams.
  • Former Minnesota sideline reporter and USL Minnesota United player, Jamie Watson, is now Nashville’s TV analyst.

MATCH INFO

Nashville SC vs. Minnesota United FC

GEODIS Park | Nashville, Tennessee

08.14.2022 | MLS Week No. 25 | MLS Game No. 25

8:00 p.m. CT (FS1, FOX Deportes, and 1500 ESPN)