With its 1-0 win over FC Edmonton Sunday in Fort McMurray, the Ottawa Fury extended its unbeaten streak to 11 games. The Fury now has a six-point cushion atop the NASL fall standings.
But what was striking about Sunday’s game is how much Fury coach Marc Dos Santos learned from this past spring’s Amway Canadian Championship loss to the Eddies, then used that knowledge to craft a game plan that neutralized one of the top offences in the league.
In the Canadian Championship defeat over two legs, the Fury was punished time and time again by the Eddies’ speed down the wings and quick counterattacks. On Sunday, Dos Santos came at the Eddies with a 4-1-4-1 formation that took away the wide areas. As well, the visitors made sure to never commit too many players forward, understanding that they couldn’t get burned on the counter.
Yes, the winning goal came deep into second-half injury time, as defender Rafael Alves headed a corner kick off the inside of the post and into the net. But, considering the chances the Fury spurned earlier in the game, it would be hard to argue that the three points weren’t merited.
Asked if the win against the Eddies was a message to the league, Dos Santos stayed the course, saying his team’s goal was to make the post-season — and that’s all.
“If I want to send a message I put it in an envelope and send it in the mail,” he joked.
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