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MATCH PREVIEW: OTTAWA FURY FC @ SAINT LOUIS FC

By Ottawa Fury FC, 05/02/19, 3:00PM EDT

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MATCH DAY INFO
Ottawa Fury FC @ Saint Louis FC
Kickoff: Saturday, May 4 – 8:30 p.m. – WWT Soccer Park
 

THE MATCHUP

Coming off an exciting home win on Sunday, Ottawa Fury FC will look to take this momentum on the road and earn another three points as it faces challenging opposition in conference-leading Saint Louis FC. The match gets underway at 8:30 pm on Saturday night from WWT Soccer Park in Missouri (OttawaFuryFC.com).

STORYLINES

  • Ottawa enters Week 9 strong off a 2-0 win against Atlanta United 2 on Sunday, and up 4 spots in the USL Championship Power Rankings. Saint Louis FC is in 1st position in the Eastern Conference after a 3-1 win over Swope Park on Saturday.
  • If the 2 teams are sitting at opposing ends of the playoff range (St Louis FC in 1st, Fury FC in 9th), their overall stats aren’t that different on paper (shots on target, shots faced, passing and duels rates, etc.)
  • This will be Fury FC’s Wal Fall first visit to WWT Soccer Park since joining Ottawa in the offseason. The lengthy midfielder was inactive in Week 8 but could make a return in time for the trip to Saint Louis.
  • So far this season, Fury FC is 1W-1D-1L away; Saint Louis FC has 3W-1D-1L at home in 2019. This will be the third meeting between the two sides, both of them from 2017. Saint Louis won 3-2 at home in April and the second meeting in September at TD Place ended in a 2-2 draw in which Fury FC defender Onua Obasi scored the tying goal in the 83rd minute.
  • With a current record of 3W-1D-2L for 10pts, Fury FC is still on its best start of a season in franchise history, having collected its most number of wins and points in its first 6 matches (2018: 0W-2D-4L 2pts; 2017: 1W-3D-2L 6pts; 2016: 1W-2D-3L 5pts; 2015: 1W-2D-3L 5pts; 2014: 2W-1D-3L 7pts)

SCOUTING SAINT LOUIS FC

Saint Louis FC is in the Eastern Conference again, but this year it enters having advanced to the USL Cup Playoffs for the first time in its history and seemingly on a positive upward path to contention in its new surroundings. Led by Head Coach Anthony Pulis, STLFC was one of the tougher teams to beat in the Western Conference a season ago, falling just nine times in the regular season as it clinched a playoff spot before the final game of the season.

If Saint Louis is to take the next step and contend in the East this season, though, it will likely need to become more prolific in front of goal. Only one team to reach the postseason – Nashville SC – scored fewer goals than STLFC’s 44 tallies, with Kyle Greig carrying the attack for much of the season as he neared 50 regular-season goals for his career. The side has looked to address that with another batch of newcomers that includes former Colorado Rapids forward Caleb Calvert and Tulsa Roughnecks FC attacking midfielder Joaquin Rivas. Should youngster Albert Dikwa take another step forward and Kadeem Dacres produce more consistently, Saint Louis could be far more dangerous in 2019.

On the flip side, the side looks set to be as solid defensively as it was a season ago with goalkeepers Tomas Gomez and Jake Fenlason both returning behind a back line that was led effectively by Sam Fink and Sean Reynolds. New arrivals Paris Gee and Bradley Kamdem Fewo should be solid additions, as should defensive midfielder Guy Abend as he joins Lewis Hilton in the middle of the park. (via USL Championship) 

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING

Head Coach Nikola Popovic

“They (Saint Louis FC) are without a doubt one of the best teams of the league at the moment. I think they are very dangerous offensively. They are able to play in different ranges of passing and switch the point of attack very fast.”

“Possession is always a discussion but it is more about where do you have the possession. Saint Louis is capable of possessing the ball in a high zone on the pitch and that’s what makes them very dangerous. However, we are going to do what we do. We are going to play our football and stick to our ideas and vision. It will be a very good game to watch for our fans at home.”

Defender Carl Haworth

“It’s just building on what we’ve been working so hard on. We’ve had some good results, and even more we’ve had some good performances even if the results didn’t go our way… so it’s about creating a few more chances on the offensive third and converting some of those. So it’s about sticking to our philosophy, our style of play and believing in our ability.”

Defender Nana Attakora

“Looking at Saint Louis, they are sitting at the top of the table right now, so obviously they’re doing something right. We’ve studied them: it’s a good team, an experienced team, and they work extremely hard. We got to do what we do. We have to go out there and play like we’re at home. I think that will be the biggest key for us to get a result there.”

VIEWING PARTY: Join the Bytown Boys at The Senate Tavern (1159 Bank St, Ottawa) to watch the match – all are welcome.

HOW TO WATCH
LIVE STREAM:  OttawaFuryFC.com
TWITTER: Follow @OTTAWAFURYFC for LIVE updates #STLvOTT #ForTheFury