PREVIEW | Eddies Look To Bounce Back Against Armada FC

FC Edmonton has dropped its last three games entering its match with Jacksonville
Jacksonville Armada FC Staff | Oct 16, 2015

Community First Park should have an intense atmosphere on Saturday when the Jacksonville Armada FC host FC Edmonton at 7:30 p.m. ET in a match with major North American Soccer League postseason implications.

The Armada FC currently has 27 points in the Combined Standings and realistically needs to win its remaining four games along with still getting help from other clubs to reach The Championship, the NASL’s four-team postseason tournament.

FC Edmonton is still in the race with 34 points, which is tied with Fort Lauderdale and one point behind Tampa Bay, but the Eddies have just two matches remaining – both against the Armada – and would need to win at least one of those fixtures to stay in contention.

Jacksonville is coming off a 3-0 loss to the Carolina RailHawks last Saturday in Cary, N.C., and played without three of its starters – Mechack Jérôme, Pascal Millien and Shawn Nicklaw – who were all out on international duty. Of the few scoring chances the Armada FC had, Carolina goalkeeper Akira Fitzgerald stopped all of them, which were mostly taken by Jacksonville forward Jemal Johnson.

FC Edmonton will be finishing up a stretch of three games in eight days. The Eddies dropped the previous two matches – last Sunday at the New York Cosmos and Wednesday at Carolina – 3-0 and 2-1, respectively. In each of those matches, FC Edmonton had only three shots. The Eddies’ lone goal against the RailHawks came in the 45th minute when forward Daryl Fordyce converted on a penalty kick.

Saturday will be the second meeting between the Armada FC and Eddies, but the first since the NASL Spring Season opener on April 4 at EverBank Field in Jacksonville, when the Armada FC won 3-1 and set a new NASL regular season attendance record of 16,134.


Jacksonville: Defenders are typically unsung heroes because they don’t typically make the stat sheet for anything other than minutes played or bookings, but Shawn Nicklaw has made a difference this season when he has started. Four of the Armada FC’s seven combined wins this year have been when Nicklaw earned the start on the back line. The 26-year-old Guam national team member has shown solid ability to push up and down the field at the right back position and help Jacksonville put extra pressure on its opponents.

FC Edmonton: The Armada FC will have its hands full with NASL Golden Ball candidates Lance Laing and Tomi Ameobi. Laing, who is a midfielder for the Jamaican national team, leads the Eddies in both goals scored (8) and assists (7), while Ameobi has notched seven goals and two assists. FC Edmonton will look to rely on the pair heavily on Saturday as it could be a shootout with the Eddies’ normal starting right center back, Albert Watson, serving a one-match suspension for two yellow cards on Wednesday against the RailHawks.


  • For much of the season, the Armada FC ranked either No. 1 or 2 in the league in fouls. Through the Fort Lauderdale match on Sept. 21 – 23 games into the season – the Armada FC had 311 fouls (13.5 per match). Since Eric Dade was installed as interim head coach, he has put a major emphasis on improving discipline, and it has shown. The Armada FC now ranks fifth in the league with 340 fouls and has averaged 9.6 fouls per match in his three games at the helm.
  • Jacksonville will have Jerome, Millien and Nicklaw back for its encounter with FC Edmonton and all three are expected to start. Although Jerome has played in just one and a half games since signing with the Armada FC on Sept. 25, Jacksonville has never trailed with him in the game.
  • Saturday is the final match Jacksonville will wear its pink breast cancer awareness jerseys specially designed by Nike. The jerseys will be auctioned off online starting at 3 p.m. on Monday, and bids can be placed by going to Proceeds will benefit the American Cancer Society in support of the organization’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer campaign.


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