For the second year running, Ottawa Fury managed to beat MLS opposition at Lansdowne Park in the first leg of the Voyageurs Cup, and they’ll hope to complete the shock defeat in Toronto tonight as they take a 2-1 lead to BMO Field. A penalty from Ryan Williams followed by a Sito Seoane goal secured Fury with a win over the MLS giants, one of the most notable results in Fury history. Cheyrou scored the all important away goal for Toronto FC, putting the pressure on Fury to score in Toronto.
Last year Ottawa Fury took a 2-0 lead to Vancouver with them, however an early penalty put Fury on the back-foot. They eventually lost with the tie 3-2 on aggregate and missed out on a spot in the Voyageurs Cup Final. Toronto FC are expected to play a much stronger squad this evening, meaning Fury will need to be at their best to avoid a potentially lopsided score line.
An Away Goal Away
Last year Ottawa Fury were an away goal away from making the final and they could very well find themselves in the same position tomorrow, if they fail to find the back of the net at BMO field. Earlier in the year Fury were struggling to score however, the club have managed to score eleven goals in their last three matches, including five against Richmond on Saturday, and will hope to build upon that against a strong Toronto FC defense. Toronto just need a 1-0 win to advance, and an away goal from Ottawa would put the pressure on the home side, requiring them to score at least two to force extra time.
Perhaps more importantly than scoring an away goal, Ottawa Fury will need to be extremely composed and focused at the back, early on, if they want to avoid giving Toronto FC an early edge. In Vancouver, Fury found themselves down after three minutes and never had a chance to take control of the match. Ottawa Fury often play in a 3-4-3 formation, and although Dalglish may be reluctant to tinker with things too much, Fury will need to be focused on defensive play, catching Toronto on the counter attack if they are to take advantage of their first leg win.
Playing With Heart
Ottawa Fury played an extremely aggressive second half in the first leg which played a large role in them being able to overturn the score line. Fury are expected to bring the same intensity with them to Toronto. Players like Eddie Edward and Ramon Del Campo could be pivotal at enforcing a physical game and for setting the tone for the rest of the team.
The odds are against Ottawa and the squad will step on the pitch with nothing to lose and everything to gain; but that may just be what the Ottawa Fury players need to etch themselves into the Ottawa Fury folklore. No matter what the result, Ottawa Fury has done their club and their supporters proud by beating Toronto FC once, but in the Voyageurs Cup anything is possible. Fury could just shock Toronto FC again!