Just a day after the departure of head coach Patrice Carteron for a club in Egypt, Phoenix Rising FC defeated Las Vegas Lights FC 4-0 led by Jason Johnson’s two goals at Phoenix Rising FC Soccer Complex on Wednesday.

Johnson’s goals, which were scored in the 31st and 77th minutes, both came off of nifty footwork through Las Vegas defenders and faking them in an opposing direction.

Despite the Rising (8-3-4) shutting out Las Vegas (3-6-4), the night was headlined by Phoenix’s one-day turnaround from the loss of its coach.

“It’s hard, man,” Johnson said of Carteron’s departure. “You know the impact, it’s all in the history books what he’s come last year and done for the club in not even a year. So, that was a big blow for us, but tonight was a big night to come out as a group. Just to show ourselves what we’ve learned from Patrice over the year. It’s still inside of us and still inside of the locker room, and we proved that tonight.”

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Phoenix Rising FC’s Jason Johnson talks after scoring two goals on Wednesday, a day after head coach Patrice Carteron’s departure.
Arizona Republic

For the second time in more than a year, the Rising have to deal with a midseason coaching change. Frank Yallop resigned as coach in April 2017.

The adjustment is something to deal with, but Johnson remained positive, continuing to use what his former coach taught him.

“You just have to fight, it doesn’t matter,” Johnson said after Wednesday’s win. “We have guys who are injured now as well, so it’s the same thing. Although Patrice isn’t on the field playing, he’s a big, big part of what we do here. Like I said, his teachings are still instilled with us.”

Defender Joseph Farrell, who added a goal in the 53rd minute, agreed.

“It was weird. (Carteron) definitely was our motivator and spirit guide there for a while,” Farrell said. “He instilled a lot of good values in us, and as a team we learned a lot from him in his time here. Obviously, he was very successful, and tonight I think it was a performance Patrice would be very proud of.”

Rick Shantz will serve as interim coach once again. After Yallop departed last season, the Rising went 3-4 under Shantz’s guidance. As the lead man, Shantz is more concerned with the players turning their attention to winning games and not worrying about who’s instructing them.

“You know, my focus with the staff was to tell the players, ‘It’s not about the coach, it’s about the team, and that they have to be together and be a family,’ ” Shantz said. “Today before the game I said, ‘That’s the crest, I’ll die for it.’ I’m going to give everything I can to them. I’m going to be a servant to the players, and all I ask of them is for 90 minutes, they give everything for the crest.”

Although it wasn’t known when exactly the decision was made by Carteron, Shantz did say, “My focus the last three days is to tell the team that I’m not going to be interim for very long.”

Rising confirm departure of head coach

June 12, 2018

Phoenix Rising FC announced Tuesday morning that head coach Patrice Carteron has left the USL club for to take over Al Ahly SC of the Egyptian Premier League.

Carteron addressed his situation in a statement posted on the team’s website on Tuesday morning:

“I am incredibly proud of my staff and players for their dedication and hard work to achieving such unprecedented success as a new professional soccer team. The empowerment from Phoenix Rising FC Governor Berke Bakay and the entire ownership group, and support from the amazing fans has been truly fantastic. I will forever remain among Phoenix Rising FC’s biggest fans.”

The Rising (7-3-4) next play at home match on Wednesday against Las Vegas Lights FC, a club that is new to the USL this season.

“Having Patrice at the helm of Phoenix Rising FC during our most important formative year has laid the foundation for decades of success,” Bakay said in a statement. “He deserves this opportunity to lead one of the world’s largest soccer teams, and they are extremely fortunate to have him as their new head coach.”

Rick Schantz has been appointed the interim head coach and will be at the helm when Phoenix Rising FC hosts Las Vegas Lights FC on Wednesday night.

Schantz is a Tucson native who played at Salpointe Catholic High School.

“We have full confidence in Rick and our coaching staff to lead our team forward and accomplish the same goals we set for the club at the beginning of the year, which is to win the USL Cup,” said Bakay. “Rick has benefited from studying under Patrice for the past year and is the right leader to guide our club forward for the remainder of the season.”

Carteron, 47, was hired in May 2017, seven games into the season. The Rising were 3-4 at the time but finished 17-8-7, including a 10-1-1 stretch in its final 12 games, to secure its first-ever USL playoff spot. The Rising were eliminated in the first round.

Up next

Phoenix Rising (7-3-4) vs. Las Vegas Lights FC (3-4-4)

When: Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. | USL standings

Where: Phoenix Rising Soccer Complex

TV. YurView Cox channel 4

Streaming: ESPN+

Outlook: After three straight road games, the Rising are home for consecutive matches on Wednesday and Saturday this week. … The Rising are third in the Western Conference standings with 25 points, one back of Portland Timbers 2. … Real Monarchs SLC lead with 31 points. The Lights are 13th in the 17-team conference. … This is the first of three meetings between the two clubs this season. … The Las Vegas roster features one-time soccer phenom Freddy Adu.

Carteron reportedly leaving for Egyptian club

June 11, 2018

On Monday, kingfut.com reported that head coach Patrice Carteron has left Phoenix Rising FC and will sign with the soccer club Al Ahly in Egypt.

When contacted at that time, a Rising spokesperson said, “We’re not commenting on anything right now.”

The Rising (7-3-4) have a home match on Wednesday against Las Vegas Lights FC, a club that is new to the USL this season.

Carteron, 47, was hired in May 2017, seven games into the season. The Rising were 3-4 at the time but finished 17-8-7, including a 10-1-1 stretch in its final 12 games, to secure its first-ever USL playoff spot. The Rising were eliminated in the first round.

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