FC Edmonton comes into this weekends matchup against the New York Cosmos surprisingly rested. Earlier this week they were supposed to have their third consecutive Wednesday evening game with a Voyageurs Cup matchup against the Vancouver Whitecaps. A freak May blizzard forced the CSA and the teams to postpone the game two weeks, giving Edmonton the second leg advantage. This decision has been controversial to some, but for Edmonton it probably turns out to be the best case scenario for them in league play.
The New York Cosmos are the NASL leaders half way through the shorter spring season. Through five games, the Cosmos have remained unbeaten with three wins and two draws. They have also been the best defensive team by a long shot, allowing only goal. They have also only scored five. By contrast, Edmonton has scored seven and allowed eight in four games.
It’s hard to say what kind of a game we are in for on Sunday afternoon. New York has displayed the ability to play a strong defensive game and hang onto a one goal lead while Edmonton has shown they can match goal for goal against anyone so far this season. The Eddies three-pronged attack with Laing, Nyassi and Ameobi should be a handful for the Cosmos as they have seemingly scored at will.
As for who to expect in getting the start on Sunday, this weeks postponement of the Voyageurs Cup game should allow Miller to throw out his best available eleven. Van Oekel will get his sixth consecutive start across all competitions, but the backline will probably have a few changes. With Albert Watson nursing an injury from last weeks game, expect Moses to move to centre back and Academy product Allan Zebie to make his first professional start at left back. Otherwise, look for Edward and Roberts to start at their regular positions. Laing, Nyassi, Raudales and Jones will likely get another start. Fordyce will be forced to sit after last weeks ridiculous straight red cad. In his place, Chad Burt should get the nod. Expect Ameobi to be the lone striker up front.
The goal for Edmonton in this game is to be focused as soon as the whistle blows as early goals have already cost this team too many points this season. If they can manage to keep the Cosmos off the score sheet for the first twenty minutes, it should bode well for the team. It won’t be easy with the Cosmos fielding former galacticos Raul and fellow La Liga veteran Marcos Senna. However, it will be interesting to see how some of the older Cosmos players deal with Edmonton’s speed.
Results across the league on Saturday night have been quite favourable for the Eddies once again and it would be huge for them to get a win this week. It would put them in fourth. A draw isn’t terrible either, as it puts them right into the middle of the table with a game in hand on a few teams. Either way, a result is crucial for the Eddies this weekend and would be a great way to start a busy two week span that features five home games in all competitions.
Please be sure to check out The Loyal Company of the River Valley podcast. New episodes come out Monday night and this week we’ll be sure to have plenty to talk about after this weekends results. Look for it on iTunes or get the direct link here: http://loyalcompanyrv.libsyn.com/rss
Photo courtesy of FC Edmonton.