Home NASL & USL FC Edmonton Fordyce’s brace gives FCE its second win of the fall season

Fordyce’s brace gives FCE its second win of the fall season

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FC Edmonton began the post-Shaun Saiko era with its second win of the fall season.

Daryl Fordyce scored twice, pacing the Eddies to a 2-1 win over the Carolina RailHawks. The big winners out of the weekend? The New York Cosmos. With Carolina’s loss, the gap between the Cosmos and the RailHawks (tied for second place) is now seven points.

With the fall season winner going to the Soccer Bowl and no playoff structure, with four games left the NASL’s final weeks is looking more and more like a lame-duck stretch run.

The RailHawks followed a familiar pattern: Unbeatable at home but strugglers on the road. The Eddies had all of the real first-half chances. Before Fordyce scored the opener, he had a chance to put the Eddies ahead inside the 20-minute mark.

A Lance Laing free kick hit Carolina keeper Akira Fitzgerald in the midsection; the rebound spilled to the middle of the area, where Fordyce had an open net. But a fantastic last-ditch sliding challenge from RailHawk and former Toronto FC defender Julius James disrupted what looked like a gimme.

But Fordyce wouldn’t be denied on his second chance. A long throw from Corey Hertzog got to the front of the RailHawks’ penalty area. It was flicked on by Eddie defender Albert Watson, and Fordyce was all alone to nod the ball home. The Eddies won the first ball and the second ball in the box, and were rewarded.

In the second half, James, who was active throughout the game, had a chance to even the score on a set-piece. He found himself wide open in the box but headed the ball over.

RailHawk Paul Hamilton, left, challenges FCE's Daryl Fordyce as the ball is headed towards keeper Akira Fitzgerald. PHOTO: TONY LEWIS/FC EDMONTON
RailHawk Paul Hamilton, left, challenges FCE’s Daryl Fordyce as the ball is headed towards keeper Akira Fitzgerald. PHOTO: TONY LEWIS/FC EDMONTON

Then, James got himself into the match report for the wrong reasons. The second Eddies’ goal saw him pulled out of position that led to Fordyce’s second goal. Edson Edward made a run up the right side, challenging RailHawks’ left back Kupono Low. But James decided to come over and help, and Fordyce ran into the spot in the middle that the defender vacated. Edward slid the ball into the box, and Fordyce pounded the ball under the crossbar.

“All credit goes to Eddie,” said Fordyce. “He made the good run up the right, he put it on a platter for me.”

Fordyce said the goals were the product of all the players on the team moving their feet and getting into dangerous spaces.

“Our last two performances (both losses) were a bit flat. The off-the-ball running was the difference today.”

Former Eddie Paul Hamilton, cut by coach Colin Miller in training camp, got the RailHawks to within a goal, heading home a free kick from Kenney Walker. It set up a frantic finish.

In time added on, RailHawk Kevin Rutkiewicz got his head to the ball in the box. Massimo Mirabelli, on the post for the Eddies, put his leg up, flamingo style, and cleared the ball off the line with his ankle.

“I’ve seen a lot of modern managers who don’t have people on the posts,” said Miller. “I don’t understand that.”

And, in a week dominated by Miller’s decision to cut ties with the team’s all-time leading scorer, the effort from his players thrilled him.

“Front to back, there were no failures. We had full and total commitment today.”

saikosignnewSupporters groups hung a large “#6 Shaun Saiko” banner in the stands, and Miller agreed to meet them after the match to clear the air.

After the match, Miller said that Saiko had become a distraction in the dressing room, and that a deadline had passed for Saiko to sign a new contract. Sources have told The 11 that the new contract offer called for Saiko take a pay cut.

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4 Comments

  1. cwell

    October 7, 2013 at 12:14 pm

    All credit to you, Marcus, and friends for showing your support for a player and the team. The Eddies need 1,000s more like you! Good on Coach Miller, as well, for meeting with you.

    Reply

  2. BCM

    October 7, 2013 at 8:06 am

    I was kidding, b/c of the nature of the photo. I actually think it’s great that a coach of a professional team would meet with any supporters hanging a sign – whether it be 1 or 1,000 – and even better when it is only 6 people (not exactly a riot).

    Reply

  3. Marcus

    October 7, 2013 at 5:49 am

    We were 6 supporters who hung the sign and left our section! It was a sign that we felt like we had to do and we are staying 100% behind our decision. The coach met with us and explained his actions from his point of view.

    Reply

  4. BCM

    October 7, 2013 at 4:19 am

    So Miller really met with the two “supporters” hanging the sign – doesn’t exactly look like a frenzy of support.

    Steven, Interested in hearing your further thoughts on the Saiko situation.

    Reply

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