Richmond Kickers / Forward Madison

Richmond Kickers: Q&A with Forward Madison

Ahead of a trio of matches coming up between the Richmond Kickers and Forward Madison, I spoke with Chris Walker to discuss the Flamingos.

1) For Richmond Kickers fans who haven’t been following each team as closely, can you give us a summary of how the season has been so far for Forward Madison?

CW: In the first third of the season, Forward Madison couldn’t find a winning combination to get the result. Through some player loans, Forward Madison have turned things around in the second third of their season. This may be the right time to get hot with just the final third of the season remaining.

2) After beating Tuscon this past weekend, Forward Madison have won three in a row and are clearly in playoff contention. How confident do you think the players and the fans will be heading into this home match against Richmond?

CW: It’s a clean slate with Richmond. This is the beginning of the season series between the two teams. I expect Forward Madison to spend the first 20-30 minutes figuring out Richmond’s form. Forward Madison has bought into the vision that they cannot drop points on any match, especially not the home matches. They have had close to sellout games at Breese Stevens Field so far. The fans are a very active part of their momentum.

3) What would you say is the biggest weakness at the moment for the club?

CW: Converting chances. Forward Madison created so many chances against OCB but, couldn’t finish them. The score line should have been like 4 to 1. In Toronto, they focused on converting chances. FC Tucson seemed like an even match. They created chances but didn’t convert on many of them again.

4) Forward Madison have three of the top six chance creators in the league, describe what makes their offensive plan so effective?

CW: Their offensive plan is effective because they seldom let the ball get to their fullbacks. The ball is typically won in the middle or up high and then Forward Madison sends the numbers with it. For chance creators, you’re referring to Josiel Nunez(MF), Don Smart (MF), and Paulo Junior (FW). Smart and J.C. Banks (FW) are the club’s leading scorers as well. It’s chemistry that bands Forward Madison together.

5) USL League One has a variety of stadiums and supporters in its inaugural year. What can you tell us about Breese Stevens Field and the supporters there in Madison?

CW: I have not experienced Breese Stevens Field in-person yet. I have had some contact with supporters in Madison though. The supporter’s community is diverse and rallies united behind this team. You can hear their renditions of songs and chants on broadcasts and they actually sound more soulful and rhythmic than what you might hear in other stadiums. They are setting records with attendance and that partly has to do with how creative their marketing team is with match day ticket bundles.

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