Locos Lose Salgado and Play New Mexico United to Scoreless Draw
It was emotional, it was gritty, it was passionate on the pitch and in the stands. All of the components of a rivalry played themselves out Saturday night at Southwest University Park as El Paso Locomotive FC and New Mexico United played to a 0-0 draw. The result helped the Locos more than United as this result keeps the Locos in first place of group C by 4 points over the United.
They night wasn’t a complete no harm, no foul type of night for El Paso. Star forward Omar Salgado went out with an apparent knee injury in the 18th minute. Salgado was replaced by Leandro Carrijo.
As for the match itself, at times it was bogged down in midfield and constantly interrupted as there was a lot of fouls produced particularly by the visiting team. The number of fouls committed would grow as the match progress especially as soon as New Mexico United realized that center referee, Ricardo Fierro, was going to allow a physical match by not giving any yellow cards early in the match. This resulted in the Locos struggling to establish a good rhythm to execute their style of play.
Despite this, it is without a doubt that the Locomotive where the proactive side in terms of trying to obtain the result. They created the highest number of opportunities and constantly pushed possession to the offensive third of the pitch were a significant part of the match was played, The visiting team found themselves playing with all eleven of their players on their half of the field frequently.
However, the goal would never come resulting with each team taking home one point at the end of the night.
After the match head coach, Mark Lowry commented the following, "I’m not going to say I’m happy. I’m proud of the fight the guys showed, the intensity, the discipline. We’ve had a ton of injuries and had guys coming in doing a fantastic job. So I’m proud, I don’t know how happy I am yet. I thought the heart and spirit was just superb. I’m don’t want to sound happy with the point because I’m not, I’m not happy that with not scoring because we had chances particularly in the first 4, 5 minutes we hit the frame 4 times, I’ve never seen that before in my life."
This match was the start of the of another nine point week for the Locos, 3 matches in one week. Up next will be a match against Colorado Switchback FC on Wednesday night. The Locos will be looking to lock up first place in their group with anything but a loss.