FC Edmonton vs. Atletico Ottawa — CPL Match #28 – Canadian Premier League


2022 CPL Regular Season – Match #28
Edmonton FC Atletico Ottawa
May 20, 2022 at 2pm MT / 4pm ET
Clarke Stadium in Edmonton, Alberta
Watch Live: OneSoccer.ca & TELUS Ch. 980 // Tickets available here

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This weekend’s action in the Canadian Premier League concludes on Sunday in Edmonton, where FC Edmonton receives Atlético Ottawa at Clarke Stadium in Albertan’s capital.

After a one-game suspension, Ottawa head coach Carlos Gonzalez is also back at the club and can return to the sidelines. Assistant coach Kwesi Loney filled in their last game – a 1-1 draw on the road against Forge FC. Ollie Bassett completed an impressive team goal to give his team a 1-0 lead in the 16th minute, but a long range goal from Forge youngster Noah Jensen gave The Hammers a point at Tim Hortons Field.

The Eddies were less successful in their road game, as they headed west to play the reigning champions Pacific FC. Alejandro Diaz continued his season start with a goal in the 10th minute, before Josh Heard doubled the home side’s lead just after the hour. Wesley Timoteo pulled one back for FC Edmonton in the 73rd minute, but they couldn’t find a second and lost for a third league game in a row, and fourth in all competitions.

The Edmonton Oilers are also in town on Sunday, a few miles away at Rogers Place for the third game of their Stanley Cup playoff series against the rival Calgary Flames. The success of the past few weeks has built momentum in the city, which Koch hopes will also have a positive effect on his team.

“To be in a city in Canada that’s in the NHL playoffs is great,” Koch said Friday. “You see orange, blue and Oilers jerseys everywhere. It brings a lot of positive energy to the city and we want to be a part of that. We are 100% behind the Oilers. The more successful a community has, the more it helps everyone else in the community.”

The Eddies are currently bottom of the CPL standings, with three points from seven games and a 0-3-4 record. Ottawa has started the season well and is part of a packed pack in the middle of the table, with eight points from six games and a 2-2-2 record. A 6-1 defeat to Valor FC a few weeks ago has left their goal difference negative, something they hope they can wipe out with a string of positive results.

The two teams have each played four times since Atlético Ottawa entered the league ahead of the 2020 CPL season. The Eddies have yet to beat Sunday’s opponents in four encounters, with the sides drawing two draws and Ottawa winning the other two. Their most recent meeting was at Clarke Stadium in October, a seven-goal thriller that was won by the capital in a seventh-to-eighth battle.

Brian Wright scored twice in the opening half on either side of a goal from Azriel Gonzalez, before attacks from Ben McKendry and Alberto Soto gave Ottawa a 4-1 lead before the hour. Adam Najem scored for The Eddies minutes after Soto’s goal, before a penalty from Fraser Aird made it 4-3 with about 15 minutes left. The Eddies pushed to complete the miraculous comeback, but couldn’t find a fourth.


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All CPL matches are available to stream OneSocceror on TELUS Optik TV Channel 980.


3 THINGS TO WATCH

  • Ottawa will play outside Ontario for the first time this season: Atlético Ottawa has had a relatively slow start to the season in terms of travel for away games to start their 2022 season, but that is coming to an end this week. Four of their first six games this season were at home, while their two away games were still in the province of Ontario – against York United and most recently Forge FC. A trip to Edmonton for Sunday’s game kicks off a two-game road trip, which will also include a visit to Valor FC in Winnipeg on Wednesday, June 1. They went 1-3-6 away from TD Place a season ago, but have been far from solid on the road in 2022. In both away games this season, they took a single run, but led for parts of the game. If they can start seeing matches when they’re in charge, they can continue to earn the points they’ve dropped so far in the early stages of the season. Their only road win of the 2021 season came against FC Edmonton, the aforementioned seven-goal thriller at Clarke Stadium.
  • Versatility key for FC Edmonton: Dealing with several absences from key players – including Tobias Warschewski, Luke Singh, Shamit Shome, Azriel Gonzalez and Andreas Vaikla, among others – FC Edmonton had to rotate the squad quite a bit. They also changed formation and started the game with a 4-4-2 formation as opposed to the 5-3-2 that they have also experimented with for much of the season. It wasn’t the first time this season that they’ve changed tack as Alan Koch tries to get the most out of his still relatively unknown squad. The players are still getting used to playing with each other and it is a very young group, but their versatility is one of their strengths. “I like the 4-4-2, it’s a formation where you’re very compact and make it difficult for teams to play through you, but it also means when you have the ball you have two goals up front” , said Alan Koch on Friday. “That wasn’t the first time we used it, we’ve used it a few times. We don’t focus so much on formations, we focus on the principles of how we try to play with and without the ball. That’s pretty consistent no matter how exactly we position ourselves.”
  • Can Ottawa build on draw away to Forge?: Atlético Ottawa shot out of the gates in 2022, winning both of their first two games – 1-0 home wins against Cavalry FC and HFX Wanderers. Their form then slumped with a 6-1 home loss to Valor FC, before losing their lead against York United and drawing 2-2 at York Lions Stadium after a goal from Dom Zator in the 94th minute. They followed that up with a 1-0 loss at home to Pacific FC, in which they were the better team for parts of the game, and a Canadian Championship qualifying loss to that same side of York United, before taking a 1-1 loss. tie away to Forge FC last weekend. It was a well deserved point on the road for Ottawa, who took the lead after a great team goal completed by Ollie Bassett – who was one of the best players in the league for six games. Not only was it Ottawa’s first ever goal against Forge, but it was also the first point against them in seven attempts. A great achievement for the club, despite only getting one point, it is important that they build on it and get some momentum.

ALL-TIME SERIES

FC Edmonton wins: 0 || Atletico Ottawa win: 2 || Draw: 2

Previous match:

October 12, 2021 – FC Edmonton 3-4 Atlético Ottawa


IMPORTANT QUOTES

“I think they are the club that has had the best off-season, they’ve brought in some top players. I wasn’t surprised to see them come out blazing, and we know it’s going to be a tough challenge.FC Edmonton head coach Alan Koch

“It’s not going to be an easy game, like every game in the CPL. Edmonton I think is a very organized team, I think they do well against any team, they don’t give easy games. They have young players, very energetic, very vertical. I trust my team and I trust the work we have done this week and I hope we can take the three points home.” † Athletic Ottawa Head Coach Carlos Gonzalez

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