Saint Louis FC Playoff Hopes: All But Mathematically Eliminated

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(Editorial) – Last night Saint Louis FC lost 2-0 to conference opponent San Antonio FC. The club has now lost five of their last ten games. They have just one win in that stretch. The ‘New Coach Bump’ of having Tim Leonardo took over for Dale Schilly as head coach. With the team falling down the table, where do they go from here? What can they do?

Saint Louis FC Playoff Hopes: All But Mathematically Eliminated

Saint Louis FC now sit in 12th in the Western Conference USL standings. They are five points out of a playoff spot with four teams between them and the eigth seed. They have just five games remaining, all of which are against current playoff teams.

At this point, every game is a must win, especially their September 10th match at San Antonio. If they get a draw in that match, they’ll need to make up five points on them in just four games. With several other teams chasing San Antonio, Saint Louis FC no longer have their destiny in their own hand. Not only do they need to go on a run in these last last five games; they need San Antonio, Swope Park Rangers, Real Monarchs SLC, and Arizona United SC to tank.

Performance vs Past Results

An argument can be made that it’s not whether you win or lose whether you’re winning or losing: performance not past results is an indication of future results. Saint Louis controlled play for much of Saturday night’s match. They outshot their opponent and won the corner battle 8-1. San Antonio goalkeeper Matt Cardone made seven saves on the day, including a stoppage time PK save.

“We had good spirit, I mean right off the bat we fought hard and got after it. We should’ve had a couple goals, and then just a cheap giveaway took some steam off of what we had going early on,” said Leonard after the match.

Defensive Issues

Even though this was a better offensive performance, the same defensive issues still exist that has plagued them since last season. The first goal was conceded off a turnover and quick counter from the midfield. The second goal was very similar.

The team still is dropping points at home in very winable games. They continue to give up goals in errors in the midfield. The scoring depth is thin beyond Irvin Herrera. They need a huge turnaround against a tough schedule AND help elsewhere. And whatever ‘New Coach Bump’ they got, it’s probably wearing off.

Saint Louis FC have been all but mathematically eliminated from the USL playoffs. The Kings Cup match and giving some youngsters some minutes might be all that’s left of their 2016 season.