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MATCH PREVIEW: OTTAWA FURY FC @ NEW YORK RED BULLS II

By Ottawa Fury FC, 07/04/19, 10:00AM EDT

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MATCH DAY INFO
Ottawa Fury FC @ New York Red Bulls II
Kickoff: Friday, July 5 – 7:00 p.m. – MSU Soccer Park

THE MATCHUP

After its last minute defeat in Tampa against the co-leaders of the league, Fury FC will head out south of the border to face a familiar opponent in the New York Red Bulls II (KO 7 p.m., OttawaFuryFC.com). If this will be the second encounter between the two sides this season, the team travels this time with the mission of getting back to its winning ways and starting a new streak to build momentum for a busy month of July. 

STORYLINES

  • With the loss in Tampa Bay to close out Week 17, Fury FC dropped to 7W-6D-3L, but remains sixth in the Eastern Conference standings and in a great position for making the playoffs.
    • Last Saturday’s match marked defender Thomas Meilleur-Giguère and forward Kevin Oliveira 50th match played with Fury FC. Meilleur-Giguère had initially joined Fury FC on his first loan from Montreal Impact in 2017 while Oliveira joined Ottawa ahead of the 2018 season.
  •  Fury FC now has three players that have over 5 goals to their name for this season: Mour Samb (14 GP, 7 G, 4th in Eastern Conference Golden Boot race), Christiano François (16 GP, 5 G), and Wal Fall (15 GP, 5 G).
  • Ottawa continues to impress with its passing averaging over 465 passes per match, 7th in the USL Championship, with Charlie Ward the main engine behind these numbers, leading the league with 1,134 passes in 1,362 minutes played (average of 74.9 passes per match).
    • In the match against the Tampa Bay Rowdies, Ward completed a total of 30 passes with a 94.7% passing accuracy in the opponents’ half and an overall passing accuracy of 93.3%.
  • Friday’s match will be the second encounter between the two teams this season. The first matchup at TD Place ended with a 1-1 draw in which Fury FC was the more dominant side for the majority of the match. The team managed to generate 6 shots on frame and a total of 15 shots, 10 of which came in the second half.
    • NYRBII has only lost twice at home this season, and has 3W-1D-1L in its last 5 matches.
    • All-time, Fury FC has a record of 2W-4D-1L against New York.

SCOUTING THE NEW YORK RED BULLS II

As much as things change at the New York Red Bulls II each offseason, so much stays the same. That’s in part why the side, led by Head Coach John Wolyniec, has reached the Eastern Conference Final of the USL Cup Playoffs each of the past three seasons. One of the best attacking teams in the league in 2018, as it racked up 71 goals in the regular season, the Red Bulls II put things into place defensively late in the season and finished the campaign on a six-game undefeated streak. Building on that defensive structure in 2019 could see the side get back into the top four this season, with returning defenders Jordan Scarlett and Allan Yanes and new Red Bulls signings Sean Nealis and Kyle Duncan potentially mitigating the departure of Hassan Ndam in the MLS expansion draft. The Red Bulls II attack figures to be as potent as before, with the duo of Jared Stroud and Tom Barlow both back to lead the side up front (via USL Championship).

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING

Head Coach Nikola Popovic

“It is that moment of the season when players that have less playing time will have to step up to the challenge and show their quality. Tomorrow we will have a nine-hour bus ride all the way to New York and two days later we catch a plane to Halifax, so this is the kind of schedule we will have to deal with for this month, and that is why this league is so demanding. The Canadian Championship is a very important competition and we want to be well prepared for it.”

“One of our visions for the club is to always be a Canadian soccer reference, so we need to sign good young Canadian talent. Our two new signings (Shaw and Coupland) are fantastic players. They still need to work very hard, but we will be patient with them as they are still very young and we will give them an opportunity to shine whenever possible.”

Defender Thomas Meilleur-Giguère

“We were realistic going into the Tampa match and I think we played a good game, so it wasn’t bad at all. We will try to start a new streak against New York. We have played New York this year and the year before it, so we know them pretty well. It is going to be a great game and we are going to stick to our game plan.”

“We know it is going to be tough with lots of games coming up. Even if we manage to win the first two games against Halifax (in the Canadian Championship), we know August will be another busy month, so we have to be professional by resting well and making sure to train in a balanced way to avoid any injuries and maintain high performances in the matches to come.”

Forward Kevin Oliveira

“We are just going to keep on playing our game. We lost at Tampa but we stuck to our game plan and we just got a bit unlucky with the result at the end. The best teams are the ones that can bounce back after a defeat and we want to show that we have enough character to do just that. We just have to get out there on the pitch to play our game and try to get the three points.”

“We just have to get in the right mindset and rest well. We have a lot of games for this month with the Canadian Championship coming up, but we have a good roster. Coach is going to rotate the team and try to rest some players. We have important games coming up, so everybody is trying to give their all on the pitch and we just have to keep doing what we are doing as of late and make sure to rest well.”

HOW TO WATCH
LIVE STREAM:  OttawaFuryFC.com
TWITTER: Follow @OTTAWAFURYFC for LIVE updates #NYvOTT #ForTheFury
VIEWING PARTY: ByTown Boys SC are hosting a viewing party at The Senate Tavern (1156 Bank St), all are welcome.