Edmonton, Alberta (May 12, 2013) – The stadium was ready and so were the 1,161 fans, it just looked like it took the home team a few minutes to get into the game against the Atlanta Silverbacks Sunday at Clarke Stadium.
Within the first five minutes it was the ‘Backs who came on strong. Striker Pedro Mendes managed a header from close range but directed it wide of the near post.
Atlanta kept coming and in the 13th minute, they had another great chance when a low cross came through the box in front of Lance Parker but no Silverbacks player was able to get a boot on it.
In the 23rd minute, it was the Eddies turn to take over the game.
Michael Cox was chasing down a through ball but before he could get there, Atlanta ‘keeper Joe Nasco handled the ball outside of the area and was shown a straight Red.
Lance Laing stepped up to take the free kick from just outside the 18-yard box and hit a blistering left-footed shot that struck the bar.
The Eddies kept up the pressure and it was Daryl Fordyce with the next good opportunity. The striker managed to get a quality shot off through the Atlanta defender but substitute ‘keeper Eric Ati made an athletic save to keep it even.
Fordyce got a second opportunity in the 41st and this time buried the Lance Laing ball with a diving header to make it 1-0 for the home side.
And they weren’t done there.
Another mistake by an Atlanta ‘keeper allowed Cox to get on the end of a bouncing ball and the striker made no mistake, firing it into the empty net, making it 2-0 going into the half.
“We played like it was Christmas and not Mother’s Day,” said Atlanta coach Brian Haynes. “We were giving away gifts out there.”
“It took us until the 31st minute before we got a shot on target and I’m not happy,” FCE coach Colin Miller said at halftime. “We’ve improved in the last 10 minutes but even at 10 men there are still some Atlanta players who are free and are getting the ball at times.
I want to get a good result here and move up the league and I want the players to learn to be absolutely ruthless here.”
With visions of second place dancing through their minds, the Eddies came out strong. It took five minutes for Robert Garrett to run up the left side and cross a ball into Cox who chested the ball expertly and bicycled it over Ati for a 3-0 lead, Cox’s second of the game.
Massimo Mirabelli came on for Shaun Saiko and nearly increased the FC Edmonton lead right away but his close range shot just missed the top of the net.
In the 79th minute, it was Parker’s turn. The Eddies’ ‘keeper made two point blank saves within 15 seconds to keep the lead at three and the home team hung on for the win, moving them into fourth going into the bye week.
Next up for FC Edmonton is a home game on May 26 versus the Fort Lauderdale Strikers.
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