The pattern for FC Edmonton this NASL season has been to start games slowly, then take over as the minutes tick by.
On Friday night, the opposite was true. The Eddies were very bright in the first 20 minutes, but didn’t create a decent scoring chance in the final 70. In the end, the Eddies escaped their trip to Ottawa with a 0-0 draw against the Fury.
“Escape” is the appropriate word, because FCE keeper John Smits, making his second start in a row, made two outstanding point-blank second-half saves, to give the Eddies their first clean sheet of the season — in Cup or NASL play.
First, he dove to palm away a volley from Fury striker Carl Haworth. The ball skipped on the turf, and Smits didn’t have a clean look as the shot came through a couple of defenders.
His second big stop came off Fury midfielder Nicki Paterson, who had a chance from less than 10 yards out after a nice run and low cross from Paulo Jr.
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