United look to punch ticket to playoffs

After coming from behind and defeating Northern Virginia Royals 4-1, Reading United turns their attention to New Jersey LUSO Parma in hopes of securing their seventh straight playoff birth.  Game time is set for 7:00 p.m. with the first 200 fans receiving a Reading United team poster.

First-year head coach David Castellanos has motivated and pushed this young Reading side towards success. His coaching experience has brought a seamless transition and the same level of success to continue the Reading legacy that former head coach Brendan Burke created in his tenure.

Alex Bono and the Reading United defense have allowed just three goals in six home games at Gurski Stadium. (Photo Courtesy of Penn Images)

Alex Bono and the Reading United defense have allowed just three goals in six home games at Gurski Stadium. (Photo Courtesy of Penn Images)

On Saturday, Reading controls their own playoff destiny within a tight Mid Atlantic Division as they host LUSO Parma. Currently, United holds the last playoff spot sitting in second place with 28 points and a one point advantage on third place Long Island Rough Riders.

Reading’s defense looks to continue its impressive play.  The back line has been solidified by the impressive play of Rob Sagel and Quincy Thomas. In net, Alex Bono’s leadership has guided Reading to an impressive 12 goals against this season, which is second best in the division behind the Rough Riders’ 11 goals against. At home, they’ve allowed a miserly three goals this season, the lowest in a hotly contested Eastern Conference.

Offensively, Reading looks to continue finding the net – something they have had little trouble doing with 27 goals for throughout the 2014 season. Forward Brett Campbell has provided intensity and consistency through Reading’s dangerous attack this season that earned him PDL Player of the Week last week.

A tuned-up team effort is key to Reading finding success against LUSO Parma. While they sit at the bottom of the standings with three points, LUSO Parma looks to play spoiler on the road. Reading will look to take control of the game from the start in order to advance into the PDL playoffs next week.

Contributor: Phil Naegley