web analytics
Austin FC get “validation” from dominant Copa Tejas display | MLSSoccer.com

Austin FC get “validation” from dominant Copa Tejas display | MLSSoccer.com

Unlike their memorable 2022 season, Austin FC didn’t have many signature wins to speak of halfway through the current MLS campaign.

But with two straight 3-0 Copa Tejas home victories this week – first on Wednesday against FC Dallas, followed by Saturday night’s drubbing of the Houston Dynamo – the Verde & Black are finally starting to resemble the team that won the inter-state rivalry last year, while also reaching the Western Conference Final.

It’s a situation that leaves head coach Josh Wolff excited for what’s to come this summer and beyond after some early struggles.

“The validation has come in the last couple of games for the guys,” Wolff said of Austin’s six goals over the past two games – three of which came courtesy of Ethan Finlay (22’), Gyasi Zardes (32’) and Julio Cascante (50’) in Matchday 21.

The latter scored his second goal in four games to help preserve a second-straight clean sheet for Austin, who moved into eighth place in the Western Conference standings with a 7W-8L-4D record.

“Julio being healthy in there, he’s kind of a warm blanket of sorts,” Wolff said of the Costa Rican center back, healthy once again after suffering a severe left adductor strain on MLS is Back opening weekend.

Cascante had recently formed a solid partnership with Aleksandar Radovanović, who played his last game with the club on Saturday with his loan from Belgian top-flight side KV Kortrijk set to expire on June 30.

“We’re sorry to see him go,” Wolff said of the 29-year-old Serbian, who logged 352 minutes in seven league appearances (four starts) with Austin.

“Unfortunately for him, there were other desires, and for his wife. We wish them all the best getting back to where they’re at, but it means we gotta get looking for a replacement.”

That replacement should arrive during the Secondary Transfer Window, which opens July 5 and runs through Aug. 2.

“We’ve got some plates spinning, so to speak,” Wolff added.

Despite this latest defensive predicament, Austin have the aforementioned Cascante back at full strength. And with club MVP Sebastián Driussi and playmaker Diego Fagúndez recapturing their best form after injury problems of their own, things are starting to look up for the Verde & Black.

“I’m really proud of the guys for the shutouts,” Wolff said. “Two shutouts in a row at home… it says a lot about our group and what we can do.

“We’ve gotta keep trying to improve.”

WATCH: Best in Texas? Austin FC win big vs. Houston Dynamo

Read More

Add Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *