In this edition of Lady Victory and Her Quest for Glory, I will be previewing Indy Eleven’s home match against FC Edmonton.
PREVIEW: INDY ELEVEN v. FC EDMONTON
All-time series record: FC Edmonton leads 3-1-2
5-10-14 FC Edmonton over Indy Eleven 2-1 at Carroll Stadium. Ambersley scored for Indy.
7-27-14 Eleven over FC Edmonton 1-0 in Edmonton. Kleberson scored for Indy (First win in franchise history).
9-13-14 Eleven and FC Edmonton draw 1-1 at Carroll Stadium. Pineda scored for Indy.
6-13-15 Eleven over FC Edmonton 3-0 in Indianapolis. Brown, Mares, and Lacroix scored for Indy.
8-5-15 FC Edmonton over Eleven 2-0 in Edmonton.
9-9-15 FC Edmonton beat Indy Eleven 2-0 at Carroll Stadium.
This past Wednesday FC Edmonton started the daunting task of playing six games in fourteen days. The Eddies were able to pick up 3 points on the road against an Armada team that is hard to crack in Jacksonville. Now FC Edmonton have to travel to Indianapolis were we should expect a major rotation of players to keep the Eddies as fresh as possible for the game on Saturday. Which is remarkable and at the same time, ridiculous to see a team like the Eddies have to travel some 3,500 miles to play two soccer games.
FC Edmonton were slow coming out of the starting blocks but have found their form in their last two games, beating Ottawa and Jacksonville. I am still not sure what to think of the Eddies because they had some turnover in the roster during the offseason and they may not put out their best starting lineup against the Eleven this weekend. However, I do expect the Eddies to generate goal scoring opportunities from the counter attack and have a stout defense.
Indy Eleven will aim to have their first three game winning streak since October 2014. Last week Rayo OKC dominated large minutes of the match and fans who watched the game did not need the stat sheet as evidence for this argument. Against the Eddies, I would like Indy Eleven to do three things. First, high pressure from the forwards and outside midfielders to force the Eddies to turn over the ball. Second, when the Eleven have the ball, play quick and force FC Edmonton to chase the game. Third, put the match out of reach in the first half. Now I understand these options maybe unrealistic because this does not fit the Eleven’s personality nor style of play. But if the Eleven go for it all in the first half, the Eddies may have to fold their cards early with tired legs, a short bench, and look forward to playing the Fury in the Amway Canadian Championship next Wednesday.
Head Coach: Colin Miller
Captain: Albert Watson
NASL record: 2-1-2 (W,D,L)
Position in NASL: 6th
Last game: W, 1-0 at Jacksonville.
Formation: (4-1-4-1) GK, Matt Vanoekel; CB, Papé Diakite; CB, Albert Watson; RB, Eddie Edward; LB, Johann Smith; DM, Cristian Raudales; CM, Nikolas Ledgerwood; CM, Shamit Shome; RM, Jason Plumhoff; LM, Pablo Cruz; F, Jake Keegan.
NASL record: 2-2-0
Position in NASL: 4th
Last game: W, 2-1 at Rayo OKC (Oklahoma City).
Formation: (4-4-2) GK, Jon Busch; CB, Colin Falvey; CB, Greg Janicki; RB, Lovel Palmer; LB, Nemanja Vuković; CM, Brad Ring; CM, Nicki Paterson; RM, Omar Gordan; LM, Sinisa Ubiparipović; F, Jair Reinoso; F, Éamon Zayed.
Brad Ring, ankle (questionable).
Cristian Raudales, calf (out).
PLAYER MATCH UP: BATTLE OF THE DEFENDERS
Albert Watson v. Nemanja Vuković
Minutes: Watson, 390; Vuković 343.
Goals: Watson 1; Vuković 2.
Each player has:
Duels won: Watson, 14; Vuković 11.
Aerial duels won: 3
Interceptions: Watson 13; Vuković 10.
The center referee for this game made his professional debut this year. In 2 games he has awarded 54 fouls, 5 yellow cards, and 1 red card.
QUESTIONS HEADING INTO SATURDAY’S MATCH:
Can Indy Eleven win three matches in a row for the first time since October 2014 and keep pace with the league leaders?
What will be the tactical approach by the Eleven when facing a team on short term rest?
Dylan Mares and Siniša Ubiparipović have played out of position for the Eleven so far this season. Could we see another player play in an unfamiliar role against the Eddies?
The Great Divide Waterfall was a manmade water fall on the High Level Bridge in Edmonton. The city shutdown the water fall in April of 2014 but the bridge is still in use for traffic.
The West Edmonton Mall is the largest mall in North America, spanning 48 city blocks.
Link to the Canadian Red Cross to help raise funds for the wildfires in Alberta, Canada
PHOTO CREDIT: JAMES (TREY) HIGDON