Coach Paul Buckle keeps team focused, performing at high level
Republic FC’s affiliation with the San Jose Earthquakes will expire at the end of the season, but Sacramento still is getting a big assist from San Jose coach Dominic Kinnear.
Kinnear not only is making forward Adam Jahn and midfielder Tommy Thompson available again for Wednesday night’s game against the Real Monarchs SLC at Bonney Field, he’s sending along rookie defender Kip Colvey to help bolster Sacramento’s back line.
Outside right back Emrah Klimenta suffered a left knee injury early in Saturday’s 2-1 win over the Seattle Sounders 2 and could be out for an extended period. He was on crutches Tuesday.
Our communication is brilliant with the ’Quakes. And again a big thank you to Dominic Kinnear because he’s been a great support to me in loaning players. But it works two ways. Those players get good minutes ... and they’re in good shape if Dominic needs them.
Republic FC coach Paul Buckle
Colvey played on loan for Sacramento against the Orange County Blues FC on April 30. He started for San Jose in its home opener against the Portland Timbers and played for the New Zealand men’s national team in May.
But the former Cal Poly star and natural right-footer isn’t necessarily guaranteed to start against the Real Monarchs SLC, even though Sacramento coach Paul Buckle is really high on him. Buckle was impressed at how well midfielder Octavio Guzman played at fullback after moving into Klimenta’s spot.
“I’m still very mindful of what Tavo gives us in the middle of the field or wide,” Buckle said. “For me, it will be trying to get some players in their rightful positions. That will be the key.”
Jahn has played in five of Republic FC’s past six matches and appeared in eight USL games this season. Thompson has appeared in six games.
“Our communication is brilliant with the ’Quakes,” Buckle said. “And again a big thank you to Dominic Kinnear because he’s been a great support to me in loaning players. But it works two ways. Those players get good minutes ... and they’re in good shape if Dominic needs them.”
San Jose announced last week it will affiliate next season with the Reno 1868 FC. The Bay Area team will control the technical side of the USL expansion franchise and provide the coaches and players.
Another defender out – Chris Christian, a mainstay in central defense, must sit out Wednesday’s match on suspension after receiving his fifth yellow card Saturday. Christian and goalkeeper Dominik Jakubek are the only players to have started all 15 Republic FC games.
“I don’t think there has been a bad challenge in any of those yellow cards,” said Buckle, who added Christian has been brilliant this season. “I think it can spoil the game when you take the physicality side out. It’s a contact sport. Now you can get booked for anything.”
6-0-3 Republic FC’s record in its last nine USL matches
Derek Foran, who started the first 11 games before missing three of the past four because of a hip injury, is expected to return to the starting lineup.
Mike da Fonte, who replaced Foran after dealing with an injury, has played well and scored the deciding goal in Saturday’s match.
Streaking – Republic FC can match its franchise-best 10-game USL unbeaten streak as it looks to sweep the three-game series with the Real Monarchs.
Sacramento, which went 8-0-2 from July 14 to Sept. 6, 2014, is riding a 6-0-3 streak in USL play.
“I was speaking to the players (Tuesday) morning to keep doing the right things,” Buckle said. “The minute you start to try to do something special or to think about special things, records, football has a way of telling you off and putting you in your place.”
A win over the Real Monarchs would move Republic FC past the LA Galaxy II and into second place in the Western Conference, one point behind the Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2.