Austin FC kicks off first game as MLS squad

Dalton Hartmann, Assistant Magazine Editor

Austin’s very own football club played their first game this week against the Los Angeles Football Club (LAFC). Austin FC lost 2-0, but for a team that just formed this year, they showed a lot of promise.

The game was a mess from Austin at points, and while they did have 56% possession of the ball, they were only able to get 12 shots off, three of which were on target, compared to LAFC, who had 24 shots with nine on target. There is still a lot to be left wanting from Austin FC, but for their first game they are at a great point. LAFC scored twice, with one score coming during regulation time and one in bonus time, both of which could have been prevented if Austin had a more refined defense. 

When watching these games, a few key players to keep your eyes on are Alex Ring, Tomàs Pochettino and Danny Hoesen. Ring is Austin’s team captain and plays defensive midfielder for the team. Ring has played all around the world and has been in the MLS since 2017 before joining Austin FC. He was selected for the 2018 MLS All-Star game and is still considered one of the best defenders in the league. On the offensive side of the ball comes Tomàs Pochettino, who is an attacking midfielder for the team. Pochettino comes to Austin FC from Talleres club, which is located in the Argentine Primera División. Pochettino will need to show his ability to create openings through his creative play like he was able to do in previous years if Austin FC is going to be able to compete with top western clubs.  The key piece to the much-needed offense is Striker Danny Hoesen. Hoesen was the first pick in the 2020 MLS expansion draft. He is a veteran striker from the Netherlands who has been playing for the San Jose Earthquakes for the last three seasons. Hoesen did suffer a leg injury, but is back in top shape to lead Austin FC in their inaugural season.

Fans looking to attend one of these games will have to wait until June 19, against San Jose FC. The Austin FC Stadium will not be complete until that time, so the first seven games for Austin will all be away games. While fans may be disappointed to not show a new team support, there will be a disproportionate amount of home games at the end of the schedule for Austin FC.