March 24, 2017 Toronto FC II USL--Preview: New Veteran Signings Expected to Keep Calm for Phoenix Rising Football Club Homw Opener (from

PREVIEW: New Veteran Signings Expected to Keep Calm for Phoenix Rising Football Club Home Opener 
By Phoenix Rising FC Communications, 03/24/17, 10:45AM MST 

(PHOENIX, AZ) March 24, 2017 – Phoenix Rising FC kicks off its inaugural 
home opener at its brand-new soccer-specific stadium on Saturday, March 25 
at 7:30 p.m. against Toronto FC II. And while the buzz surrounding the match 
continues to grow (the club announced a sell out on Thursday night) Head Coach 
Frank Yallop is confident his veteran players will keep their cool.

“They’re not going to be nervous,” Yallop said. “Young guys need to be settled 
down on a big occasion. It’s going to be a packed house. The pressure’s on. 
We want to play well and win. So, I feel that the older guys are going to calm 
our young boys down and just play the game. Don’t worry about the outcome. 
If you play well and perform well, usually you win.”

The club has no shortage of players with big-game experience. Forward Omar Bravo 
and midfielder Shaun Wright-Phillips have played on the sport’s biggest stage: 
The World Cup. While fellow veteran defenders Jordan Stewart and Peter Ramage 
have experience playing in England’s Premier League.

“I see (the older players) putting their arm around people and talking to them 
individually,” Yallop said. “We have a really exciting young left back 
in Victor Vasquez. He can run like the wind. And I always see Omar (Bravo) 
talking to him and just trying to settle him down and get him to play simple 
when he needs to.”

Bringing in those types of players may have seemed like a challenge 3-4 months 
ago when the club’s pop up stadium was still just a concept. But Yallop said 
he sold them “on the dream” as he took them to the empty space where the stadium 
would eventually rise.

“It was tumbleweed where I pointed to the stadium location when players came 
in and signed,” Yallop said. “Jordan and Shaun, they didn’t laugh, but they 
were like, ‘There’s no chance that it’ll be ready.’ But here we are and 
it looks fantastic.”

Match details
Phoenix Rising FC v. Toronto FC II
March 25, 2017 | 7:30 p.m.
Phoenix Rising Soccer Complex

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