TAMPA, FL (January 24, 2020) – Reading United’s 25th anniversary season will open on Friday, May 22nd against Lehigh Valley United, the team learned on Friday afternoon. The full 14-game Mid Atlantic Division slate includes old faces like Lehigh Valley United, Evergreen Hammers, and Ocean City Nor’easters, while mixing in USL League Two newcomers West Chester United, Philadelphia Lone Star, and FC Bascome Bermuda.
Reading looks to capture its fourth divisional crown in five years, and potentially become the second team in league history to reach three consecutive finals. United claimed their second straight Eastern Conference title last season, finishing with a 10-1-3 record and advancing to the USL League Two Final for the second year in a row. Two United players (Felipe Hideki and Lamine Conte) were named to the All-League team, with Conte selected as the league’s Defensive Player of the Year.
Head coach Alan McCann returns for his third season at the helm, collecting Coach of the Year honors the previous two seasons.
All home dates are slated for 7:00pm kickoffs. Location is still being finalized, and will be announced at a later date.
United kick off their schedule on Friday, May 22nd against local rival Lehigh Valley United. Reading defeated their Allentown-based counterparts by a 10-2 margin last season, and holds a 10-1-1 overall record against LVU. The final 5-0 victory in the 2019 season finale marked the 26th consecutive regular season game without a loss at home for Reading - a mark they look to continue in the 2020 season opener.
Reading will then take the short trip down the Pennsylvania Turnpike to face West Chester United on Tuesday, May 26th. West Chester will already be deep into their league schedule by this point, as the match will be their fourth home tilt of the young season and fifth overall. This is West Chester’s first foray into USL League Two, already having an extensive record of success with their NPSL and local adult clubs.
A trip to Bermuda comes next on June 3rd, as the United will travel to face a Bermudian team for the first time since 2012. FC Bascome Bermuda comes in as a bit of an unknown, but are headed by former Bermuda National Team coach Andrew Bascome.
A four-game homestand awaits Reading on their return. Ocean City Nor’easters are first up on Saturday, June 6th, meeting Reading for the 51st time in club history. United hold a 22-21-7 overall record against the Nor’easters, including splitting a pair of games last year.
Reading then face Evergreen Hammers four days later on Wednesday, June 10th. United continued their dominant stretch against the Leesburg, Virginia side, shutting them out 3-0 and 2-0 last year. Reading is 8-0-0 against Evergreen, outscoring the Hammers 31-4 since the 2016 season.
FC Bascome Bermuda will swing through the United States for a weekend pairing against Reading, meeting first on Friday, June 12th and again on Sunday, June 14th. It will then be Reading that will hit the road for consecutive road matchups, facing Evergreen on Wednesday, June 17th and again on Saturday, June 20th.
United return home to face West Chester United on Friday, June 26th, then hit the road again for two more.
A trip to South Philadelphia on Sunday, June 28th will see Reading and Philadelphia Lone Star do battle for the first time since the 2019 U.S. Open Cup First Round match. Reading advanced with a 2-1 victory in a tight affair in the clubs’ only meeting.
Reading ends their schedule with a road match at Ocean City on Friday, July 3rd, a home date with Philadelphia Lone Star on Friday, July 10th, and a final road date with Lehigh Valley on Sunday, July 12th.
Season tickets that give entry to all seven home dates are available for only $20 at readingunitedac.com/tickets.