Minnesota United start new NASL season with tame draw in Tampa Bay


Minnesota United started their season in the North American Soccer League with a tame draw at the Tampa Bay Rowdies.

After the excitement in the weeks preceding the season with news the club had won an MLS franchise, the Blaine side were unable to translate this fervor into a win.

Their opener against a team that finished several places below them in the NASL last season – albeit one which has strengthened significantly after raiding the (United's playoff conquerors) Fort Lauderdale Strikers in the off-season.

The Loons started at breakneck pace, pressuring Tampa Bay into some woeful defending that let Jonny Steele in the fifth minute, only for the debutant to see his shot turned onto the post by goalkeeper Kamil Contofalsky.

United were the better team in the first half, with tricky USA international Miguel Ibarra causing their opponents plenty of trouble, but the Rowdies grew into the match as it wore on and in the second half had the clearer chances.

Fortunately they were spared going a goal down for some extremely ordinary finishing from Tampa Bay.

Forward Robert Hernandez should have given the home side the lead in the 53rd minute, only to horribly skew his shot at an open goal, with United 'keeper Sammy Ndjock in no man's land.

And Dark Clouds' hearts were in mouths in the 90th minute when Rowdies' striker Brian Shriver was presented with a near-post header that should have been dispatched, but went into the side-netting.

Next up for Minnesota United is a trip to the Ottawa Fury next weekend, before the home opener in two weeks against the San Antonio Scorpions.

Next Up

hazelewood burgers

3 Minnesota restaurants make it on 50 best burgers in America list

A travel website praised the restaurants' burgers in a recently released list.

Fire, firefighters

Firefighter critical after gun discharges during blaze, hitting him

The 35-year-old Cornell firefighter is hospitalized in critical condition

evelyn adams

After 2 years, sheriff's office seeks new leads in unsolved deadly home invasion

"The sheriff’s office is close to knowing exactly what occurred that night but needs your help," the sheriff's office said.

joseph heroff

Man charged in chase that ended with police fatally shooting suspect

The suspect who was shot has also been identified.

Royce Lewis

Twins' Royce Lewis tears his ACL, will undergo surgery

A huge blow for the former No. 1 draft pick.

Screen Shot 2021-01-22 at 9.08.16 PM

Police release cause of death for daughter of MN Supreme Court Justice and Allina CEO

Olivia Chutich died from a combination of excessive drinking and hypothermia.


Science Museum of Minnesota to reopen this weekend

The museum will be open on weekends with limited capacity and other safety precautions.

Keith Ellison

State officials push for shortened sentences for some elderly inmates

A bill introduced in the state Legislature would allow elderly inmates to apply for shortened sentences if they show evidence of rehabilitation.


Walz says state will soon announce next COVID vaccine priority groups

In a "short time," the governor expects to be able to give all Minnesotans an approximate date for when they'll be able to get the vaccine.