Home NASL & USL FC Edmonton With the club’s path unclear, FC Edmonton begins releasing players

With the club’s path unclear, FC Edmonton begins releasing players


The group of FC Edmonton players had their contracts expire on November 15. And with the team in limbo at the moment, it’s really no surprise that the team is now making the news of these players’ departures official.

The club announced Thursday that Dustin Corea, Tomi Ameobi, Daryl Fordyce and Sainey Nyassi won’t be back.

The club isn’t selling tickets for 2018 at the moment. The NASL, the league in which FCE has participated since 2011, is currently in a legal battle with the United States Soccer Federation. The league was denied Division-2 status by the USSF for the 2018 season; the league asked a federal judge for an injunction, didn’t get it — and is currently appealing the decision. Meanwhile, the league has undertaken a larger antitrust suit against the USSF. But FC Edmonton, as a Canadian team that isn’t governed by the USSF, was not part of the committee that decided to take legal action and were not named on the league’s original application for Div-2 status.

The San Francisco Deltas, the NASL champs, have folded, though there is some hope that the league can revive them. Of course, this is moot if the NASL loses its appeal. And, on Thursday, North Carolina FC joined the Ottawa Fury and Tampa Bay Rowdies as NASL clubs that have made the jump to the USL.

So much politics, and pretty well all of it is out of FCE’s control.

Owner Tom Fath has been going to Canadian Premier League talks, but nothing official has been announced with that league — including the formation of that league itself. While the stated goal was to launch in July of 2018, league president Paul Beirne has stated that the league will not rush into a kickoff where teams are only sort of half-ready.

With all of this uncertainty, the team has no choice but to let players go.

And that’s the rub: Even if the NASL does survive, players can’t simply wait around and see what happens out of the court case. They need to secure jobs for the upcoming season. Drew Beckie, the Canadian who played in Jacksonville in the 2017 season, tweeted earlier this week that he was off to Finland. More will follow that example. So, even if NASL does eventually come to some sort of deal with the USSF or wins its appeal, many of the teams won’t be able to bring back players who have already had to go and find something else.

Fordyce is FCE’s all-time top scorer. He left the club in 2016 for USL’s FC Cincinnati, but returned to Edmonton before the start of the NASL fall season. The Northern Irish player does not take up an international slot because he is a Canadian resident.

Ameobi is one of only three players to break the 100-game mark with the Eddies. He took time away from law school this year to re-focus on his game, but suffered a series of injuries that limited his effectiveness and playing time.

Corea has already publicly said goodbye to Edmonton via his Twitter account, and was named the team’s player of the year by the club’s supporters.

Nyassi had been with Edmonton for three seasons, scoring five goals and adding nine assists in 71 NASL matches.

“Their play on the pitch will be remembered by the club and its fans as some of the best talent the city of Edmonton has had the honour of experiencing, and it’s been an absolute pleasure working alongside them throughout the years,” said coach Colin Miller in a release.

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  1. FootyFan

    November 20, 2017 at 9:12 pm

    That is some of their best players. Sad to see but what can either party do?
    Glad to see one was working on his law degree.

  2. footy fan

    November 17, 2017 at 6:15 pm

    San Francisco Deltas have not folded.They may still end up folding but technically haven’t yet and the NASL is working to facilitate a sale.Wouldn’t be surprised if they’re league owned if settlement or appeal is made and NASL returns in 2018.

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