Live Blog: Oakland Roots vs. RGV Toros

Hello and welcome to the blog’s live coverage of the Oakland Roots’ season opener against the RGV Toros, coming to you from Ale Industries in the Fruitvale District. It’s our first look at Juan Guerra’s system and the 2022 team and we’re hoping to see that attacking style that Chuy Enriquez raved about when we spoke at last month’s media day.

“There’s going to be a lot of attack. Attacking, that’s for sure. I can’t really talk about it too much because I’m still learning, we just started. But little-by-little, day-by-day, we’re implementing new things from the new coach’s philosophy and way of play; I really like it and the whole team really likes it. Expect us to score a lot of goals and create a lot of opportunities. For sure, just know we’re going to attack, attack, attack,” said Chuy.

In Aaron’s offseason primer, he provides a rundown of the Oakland Roots from top-to-bottom and some loose predictions to how the attack works out. Well, today is the first guess on how Guerra’s system may look.

Peter, Aaron and I also take our cracks at guessing the Starting XI for today’s game, give it a gander to get a refresher on who we may see tonight. We must mention that Juan Carlos Azocar is, in fact, available. Maybe he starts on the wing, maybe he doesn’t. It’s worth noting that Azocar has experience at fullback, which is the Roots’ thinnest position.

Key Events

  • Toros goal – 34′

Roots fail a clearance out of the area, good tiki taka to Frank Lopez, deflection off of Emrah Klimenta and past Taylor Bailey.

  • Oakland Roots Starting XI Reaction

Some shockers all around. Paul Blanchette is not starting and Taylor Bailey gets the opening night cap. I’m a full believer in Bailey, but Blanchette was a top-10 keeper. Would love to know more there.

Lindo Mfeka starts at striker, meaning he’s fully healthy, while Darek Formella on the left wing. Charlie Dennis and Jose Hernandez make an attacking-minded midfield with Jojo Nane backing them up instead of Matias Fissore, who is not on the bench, obviously dealing with an injury.


  • Juan Guerra thoughts after the match:

“What hurts is that I didn’t think we were us. We were working on certain things for five and half weeks and it took us too long to become who we are to become our identity, so that’s what hurts the most. Not everything was negative. I saw some positives. At the end of the day we have to move on and there are still 33 matches left. We make sure we fix the things that didn’t go well today and we start thinking of Memphis, tonight.”

  • The first thing to work on in training this week?

“We have to make sure that we are brave, that we have courage, that we keep the ball in the opponent’s half. At times we were too eager to go forward and be vertical and it was at times not necessary. We lost possession of the ball too many times and we want to be a team that can keep the ball. Today was a good test for us. We start thinking of Memphis, and we move on.”

  • What positives would you like to highlight?

“It was good for us to transform, for example. We changed the shape because we wanted to exploit other spaces that were available and the guys did it. So, that was good. The team has the ability to tactically adapt during games and that is important. I said to the guys it’s just one game. I hate to lose and the boys hate to lose too and I’m sure we will be able to come back next week.”

Full Time
Only 2 shots, none on target; RGV with 13 shots, one on target, five shots blocked.
Johnny on for Dennis -87′
Rodriguez replaces Charlie Dennis.
Barbir on for Emrah – 75′
Barbir replaces Emrah in the 75th.
Chuy on for Lindo – 69′
Enriquez on for Lindo.
Formella nice pass, Lindo can’t finish – 67′
Darek Formella works his way in, sends a pass to Lindo but he cant handle it.
Lindo ball deflects towards net – 60′
Ball skips towards Lindo, his attempt doesn’t make good contact. Easy save for RGV.
RGV easy shot on target – 49′
RGV easy shot on target to handle.
Lindo shot wide – 45+1
Akeem with a perfect ball to Lindo Mfeka in the area, take a touch but his shot on the volley trails left of the post. Best chance for Roots thus far. Goes into halftime 1-nil Toros.
Akeem ball toward Lindo
Akeem with a ball toward Lindo, can’t handle the first touch.
Toros goal – 34′
Roots fail a clearance out of the area, good tiki taka to Frank Lopez, deflection off of Emrah Klimenta and past Taylor Bailey.
RGV foul, good area – 31′
Roots draw a foul in a good area. Dennis territory, ball in goes nowhere.
Formella nice pass in – 25′
Formella nice ball in, deflected high. Goal kick.
RGV on the front foot – 16′
Toros looking like the more aggressive team thus far. A couple of high claims by Bailey, but nothing overtly challenging for either side.
Big tackle Akeem – 4′
Big tackle in the box by Akeem Ward, RGV on the front foot. Big opportunity missed by RGV.
Game time!
Packed house of 50-100 in the RGV Toros home opener. Not sure what USL was thinking putting a opening night there instead of Laney.

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