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Louisville City Draws 1-1 at Richmond; Sidney Rivera Sent to Orlando On Rehab

Louisville City FC remains undefeated in the early USL season after a road draw with the Richmond Kickers on Saturday. Plus, whatever happened to Orlando City loanee Sidney Rivera?

Matt Fondy challenges a Richmond Kicker player for possession Saturday at City Stadium in Richmond, VA.
Matt Fondy challenges a Richmond Kicker player for possession Saturday at City Stadium in Richmond, VA.
Pattie Anderson

In a physical, yellow card-filled affair, Louisville City FC (1-0-1, 4 points, USL Eastern) came away with a valuable road point against the Richmond Kickers (0-0-2, 2 points, USL Eastern) in its first ever away game, thanks to a first-half goal from Carolina Railhawks loanee Austen King.

After a physical start to the game, which saw Louisville City and former Richmond defender Conor Shanosky receive a yellow card just four minutes into play in his first return to City Stadium as a visiting player, a Richmond defender made a reckless tackle on Louisville midfielder Guy Abend, forcing the Israeli to leave the game with a leg injury. However, when one player goes down, it provides an opportunity for another, and King, a defender who had yet to be announced by the club, was the man who seized it.

The former Elon University player headed home a Juan Guzman free kick between two Kicker defenders in the 35th minute to give the visitors the deserved early lead. Louisville City had had the better of the play up to that point, challenging a Richmond defense which had tied for third in the league last season in fewest goals allowed, with 28.

Despite a multitude of other scoring chances in the first half, including near-misses from both Nate Polak and Kadeem Dacres, King's header would count for the only goal at halftime.

Richmond was quick to change the scoreline after the break, equalizing six minutes into the second half. Kickers Forward Matthew Delicate played hero in front of the home crowd of 4,683 by getting in behind the Louisville defense to collect a lobbed pass, which he would calmly finish under duress past LCFC keeper Scott Goodwin. It was Delicate's second goal of the season.

The goal seemed to lift a Kickers side which had been dominated in the first half. After equalizing, Richmond would push for a winner and had the better of the chances in the late going. However, due to a key save by Goodwin and a few unlucky misses, the match would end in a 1-1 draw.

The draw keeps Orlando City's USL affiliate unbeaten after two matches. LCFC will next play on Thursday, April 16 at home against the 1999 U.S. Open Cup champions, the Rochester Rhinos. The match begins at 7 p.m. at Louisville Slugger Field.

Highlights from the draw:

Sidney Rivera Heads Home for Rehab

Orlando City and Louisville City have an MLS-USL affiliation that allows for OCSC to send LCFC a few players on loan, but it might be a few more weeks before we see a Lion suit up for Louisville.

Sidney Rivera, the 21-year-old forward out of Old Dominion, had been sent north to Louisville under the agreement to see more playing time. However, a previously undisclosed groin injury has kept the 2015 fourth-found pick out of practice and games for Louisville City so far this season. Apparently, it has now forced him back to Orlando for a rehab stint.

Rivera began making mention of the situation on his twitter account last week, and on Monday LCFC club spokesman Steve Peake told The Mane Land, "Sidney is currently in Orlando recovering from a groin injury that has sidelined him for the past couple of weeks." No word on how soon Rivera can be expected back.

Notes

  • The injury Guy Abend sustained in that tackle against Richmond is not a broken leg, according Louisville City Owner Wayne Estopinal's Twitter account. No word on how long the injury will keep Abend out.
  • After sharing the armband in the preseason with former Orlando City Lion Bryan Burke, it appears that Matt Fondy will be captain this season. Although no official announcement has been made, Fondy wore the armband as captain for the second time in as many matches on Saturday.