Home NASL & USL FC Edmonton The three games that ruined FCE’s chances for a post-season spot

The three games that ruined FCE’s chances for a post-season spot


When the team you support is eliminated from the post-season picture, it’s normal to look back on the season and obsess about that game where your side was robbed by the ref or that match where your team hit three posts and a crossbar.

After FC Edmonton was eliminated from NASL post-season contention last weekend in Fort Lauderdale, it would be hard to blame an Eddies supporter for not obsessing over the games where points were dropped.

In the end, that supporter should come to the logical conclusion that the Eddies could have easily gone into that game with Fort Lauderdale with an NASL post-season slot already salted away. I’ll look at three games that should have been wins for the Eddies — instead, they only got two points from those matches.

July 13: Ottawa Fury 0, FCE 0
The game was played at Commonwealth Stadium because new turf was still in the process of setting at Clarke Stadium. With pitch-side temperatures at a sweltering 35 C, the Fury went down to 10 men early in the second half. But the Eddies couldn’t take advantage of a team down a man in the heat. But, late in the match, Hanson Boakai’s left-footed effort struck the post. In time added on, Horace James’s effort went off the post.

July 27: Indy Eleven 1, FCE 0
FCE took 28 shots at the Indy Eleven goal at Clarke Stadium. Out of those 28, none went in. Two FCE attempts were cleared off the line. Attempts from Daryl Fordyce, Lance Laing and Michael Nonni hit the woodwork. Cristian Raudales missed a wide open net from a few feet out. After all that domination, the Eddies gave up a suckerpunch goal from Kleberson deep into the second half. It was a loss that defied description — coach Colin Miller lamented that the nature of the missed sitters was “a physical impossibility.”

Oct. 4: FCE 1, Tampa Bay Rowdies 1
The crowd at Al Lang Stadium didn’t catcall in hopes of drawing a penalty kick. When referee Ted Unkel put up his arm in the FC Edmonton penalty area, he was surrounded by Rowdies players, because they were so sure the free kick had been awarded Edmonton’s way. But Unkel pointed to the spot, which led to Tampa’s tying goal in a game that was arguably the Eddies’ best road effort of the season. The Eddies are still looking at the replays, wondering how Unkel could have judged defender Kareem Moses to have impeded a Rowdies attacker. The Eddies have been victims of bad calls before; the human factor is part of the game. But this particular call, which came as the Eddies were surging up the standings, did more harm to the Eddies’ post-season hopes than all of the other controversial calls that went against the Eddies, combined.

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  1. Kahkakew Yawassanay

    November 3, 2014 at 6:30 pm

    For FCE their Achilles heel was their lack of scoring particularly a CF or winger that could be a target man or scorer…this is why they were unable to turn too many ties into wins and as a result, along with their pathetic spring campaign missed on out the playoffs….so they have several holes to fill…and there are two questions…one, will the crowds ever increase past the average of 3300 so the Faths actually break even or make a profit and secondly, will the scouting for FCE improve to find more offensive players…scoring has been an issue since inception and now that they had a sniff at success, will all areas of their operations improve which should mean changes….Miller has been given the time(if successful) to see FCE grow into a constant contender….will the supporters and interest do the same?
    As a supporter I would relish the day the city agrees to fund or co-share funding either a Clarke expansion to a 10K stadium or development of a new stadium in the city that is football specific…until then there remains a lot of uncertainty about FCE remaining viable..it now appears the CFL-NASL division was a farce so here is hoping another city(ies) in the west open new franchises such as Calgary, Saskatoon, Winnipeg or Victoria

  2. jamonty42

    October 30, 2014 at 11:58 am

    Firstly, as a long time, long-distance follower of FC Edmonton, it pains me to realise that the only two home games that I have EVER attended made the “ruined FC Edmonton’s season” list. Had I been a superstitious (or self-centered) person, I’d think it was me…

    But I wanted to comment about “left back” saying that “that the team has no real identity” and that “the roster has been a revolving door”. I would strongly disagree with both those statements.

    Colin Miller, dispite misgivings from fans, has built a team that is all about hard work. I didn’t see Blanco fitting that mantra and he is no longer with the club. Watson on the other hand, does clearly fit that role and is the glue. He is also one of the hardest working and toughest players. He leads by example and it would appear many of those in the starting XI bought in.

    Revolving door might refer to the difference in line-up from 2013 to 2014. During the season though this team was quite stable.

    Prior to the TB game, the announcers mentioned that the Rowdies had once again fielded a brand new starting eleven. FCE is not Tampa Bay. It took time, but the Eddies eventually did find a line-up that produced results.

    Certainly there are disappointments and the face of the FCE merchandise (Jonke) was one of them. But I see the positives of Laing in midfield, Smits in goal, Horace James’ speed, a bit of stability in the middle (Hlavaty/Jones) and of course the strides made in the Canadian championship.

    Of course, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention Steven Sandor as the off-the-pitch MVP.

    Finish off those Gorilla’s from Atlanta and on to thinking of 2015!

  3. left back

    October 29, 2014 at 3:40 pm

    Thanks for all you hard work this season with the Eddies SS. (steve sandor)

    Not sure what the future of this team is. One problem i have with the Eddies is that the team has no real identity. I know it is still a young franchise but it is hard to describe the team. They are hard working… i will give them that… skill is not the forte…

    anyway… the team has changed so much and the roster has been a revolving door so… i hope CM can hold onto some players and create a foundation for the side.

    The NASL is a journeyman league and that is the nature of it. I know players are at the bottom rung of pro soccer in North America and smaller European leagues so… i would guess the players don’t know where they will be next year either. I hope some get a look in at MLS clubs.

    My thoughts on players this season.

    My mvp for the year is Albert Watson… he is the glue… no doubt.

    I feel for Frank Jonke… had a nightmare season with injuries and never got going. I thought he was going to be good for us. Will we see him back?

    Whatever happened to this Banner fella they signed?

    Laing was obviously a force. Thought R Jones played well at times. Ameobi gave them a focal point of attack. Navarro and Blanco were poor all things considered. Chad Burt did well for us. Smits did have a decent season but will be remembered for his howler at the end. Parker has to stay healthy. Edwards, Fordyce, Moses, James and Hlavaty all performed well enough.

    Thanks again SS. Let’s hope we see more of Boakai next year… or any local guy they can throw into the mix… you know how i feel about them not going local!!!

    Until next season.

    left back

    • Steven Sandor

      October 29, 2014 at 6:18 pm

      Banner missed most of the season due to a knee injury suffered in the spring.

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