FC Edmonton away at Indianapolis Eleven
The first half settled into a black and blue affair. Perfect. This was just what the Eddies needed. Some players don’t really focus until they’ve been knocked and knocked someone else on their ass. For the most part the ref let them play. A deserved yellow went to Indianapolis, and there were no protests. There are definitely things to like from Indy. Some solid pressure put on by the Eddies, but the home side were up to the task.
It was a decent first half. I’ll offer some critiques, but they are minor, and all in all I was satisfied with the effort level. It would be nice to see the Eddies attack crosses a bit more, especially off corner kicks. Far too often they seem to be waiting for the ball to come to them, as opposed to meeting the ball nearer the front post, at it’s highest point. It’s about assertiveness, and it’s more of a mindset than anything technical (in my own, admittedly modest experience, anyways).
Offensive gap control was a step up from the previous game, but still a few too many 30 yard passes for my liking. Improvement is improvement though. We’ll monitor this as the season goes on.
Some positives – Defensive gap control was up to par – maybe not an A but probably a B+. Indy tries some fancy back heel passes and Diakite says no way Jose and comes through with a big ol’ boot like he’s gonna take someone’s leg off. Good stuff. Konopka looks solid. He isn’t tested much in the first but he makes the saves he should. A decent half.
Opening 15 of the 2nd is a toss up – only one major chance that goes to Indy, as Konopka recovers from being wrong-footed on a deflected volley to make a good save. Might have been the best game I’ve seen from him.
A nice little counter attack by the Eddies is ruined by a premature ball over the top. I’d rather see them carry a little more on this one. I believe it was a 6 on 4 and I like the urgency but you’ve also got to take your time, find the open man and play him into feet. Definitely could have been our away goal if it was correctly worked.
Corea looks annoyed as he’s subbed off. The Eddies are black and blue, but if you’re one of the rabbits up front you gotta be making runs and making defenders nervous. It’s not good enough to just be defensively responsible. He’s got some decent offensive flair but he’s got a tendancy to go missing at times. I’d just like to see him run at defenders when he’s played on the wing. The world is your oyster out there, use the space you have and fear no foe (see what I did there).
65th min or so – the Pitch starting to tilt towards FC Edmonton’s goal, some half-chances in short succession for Indy. Diakite gets a talking to but avoids a second yellow on a marginal foul. Didn’t deserve to be sent off, despite the shouts from the Indy supporters.
Shiels goes down, a little easily for my liking. He knew he lost the ball and sold it well. Morality aside, a bit of a veteran move that I’m sure he picked up in SPL, but I wouldn’t count on it endearing him to Canadian fans.
72nd minute or so, a little more possession and pressure from Ed, but Indy still with spells of pressure as well.
A GREAT hit by Khattab. Unfortunately Indy’s keeper was up to the task, but it’s nice to see what we paid for. If that’s what his shots look like, I really hope folks start deferring to him a little bit. I know I was harping on not deferring too much, but if you’ve got a guy with a cannon like that, well, it’s another story.
Colin Miller looks a bit frustrated. I can’t say I blame him. It’s a little disappointing to see the team play well everywhere except the final third. Credit to the Eddies, I don’t think it’s a lack of effort, just a lack of execution. I don’t get too upset about execution, if the effort is there.
Second yellow for Ring from Indy and he gets sent off in the 88th minute. Too late for it to be a factor, but the game seems sealed to be a scoreless draw. A point is better than none, and almost more importantly perhaps (in a league this size) is denying Indy points at home. If they can score some goals I expect them to be a formidable squad.
I’m not overjoyed but I’m not upset either. An entertaining game between two hard-nosed teams and I’m looking forward to the home fixture.
Oh and #CanPL