Match Preview | Ottawa Fury FC at Toronto FC
Semi-Finals, Leg 2
Ottawa Fury FC @ Toronto FC
Kickoff: Wednesday, August 14 - 7:30 p.m. ET
BMO Field, Toronto, ON
OTTAWA - Despite the disappointing result in the first leg of the semi-final, Fury FC conceding a 0-2 victory to Toronto FC, Ottawa is travelling to BMO Field full of confidence and belief, looking to shake the table and earn a spot in this year's Canadian Championship final.
The winner of the two-legged, home-and-away, aggregate score format qualifying round between Ottawa and Toronto FC will get to meet either Montreal Impact or Calvary FC in the two-legged final, with Montreal winning their first leg at home. The winner of the tournament will hoist the Voyageurs Cup after the second leg of the Final Round scheduled for 25 September and earn a berth to the 2020 Concacaf Champions League.
Fury FC will visit Toronto FC in the Canadian Championship semi-final after dropping the first leg, not for lack of effort, 2-0.
Fury FC had 5 Canadians on its starting line-up (Irving, Gagnon-Laparé, Meilleur-Giguère, Haworth and Mannella), with 5 more on the bench, one of them jumping in as a substitute in the second half (Tissot).
Ottawa posted stats representative of the good showing they put on the field, holding on to a slight advantage in ball possession (58%), stringing 485 passes and creating 6 shots, against a top-level opposition team.
Fury FC has reached the semifinals for a fourth consecutive year now.
All-time record for Ottawa in the competition is 7W-2D-9L, reaching the next round of play in the last 4 of its 5 attempts now.
Highlights for Fury FC were in 2016 with a big 2-0 win over the MLS Vancouver Whitecaps at home, and in 2017 with the 2-1 win against Toronto FC at TD Place.
Ottawa has faced opposition from three different leagues in its previous 5 appearances in the competition: NASL (FC Edmonton), PLSQ (AS Blainville), MLS (Vancouver Whitecaps and Toronto FC), and CPL (HFX Wanderers FC).
The winner of this semi-final between Ottawa and Toronto FC will get to meet either Montreal Impact or Calvary FC in the two-legged final.
No strangers to Canadian talent, Fury FC will count on the 18 Canadians on its roster, including some with great Canadian Championship experience.
All 4 goalkeepers are Canadians, and both Callum Irving and David Monsalve have previous experience in the Championship.
Ottawa has 7 Canadian defenders on the roster, including Nana Attakora, Carl Haworth and Maxim Tissot who each played in 10 Canadian Championship games before this year.
Fury FC 6 Canadian midfielders are a mix of experience and youth, with Chris Mannella and Jérémy Gagnon-Laparé having played for the Voyageurs Cup before, and Antoine Coupland, Protais Mutambala, Luca Ricci and Cameron Shaw all looking for a first kick in the competition.
Past encounters have gone for the most part Toronto's way, but this Fury FC team is very different from previous seasons.
Compared to last season, Fury FC has some firepower up top this season with notably four players being on at least six goals: Wal Fall (7), Mour Samb (7), Carl Haworth (6), and Christiano François (6).
All-time, Fury FC has a record of 1W-0D-4L. against Toronto FC.
With their win in the first leg, Toronto FC extended their Canadian Championship unbeaten streak to eight matches, dating back to 2017 when they lost to Fury FC in Ottawa.
WHAT THEY'RE SAYING
Head Coach Nikola Popovic
"(To be successful) we have to see goals. If we want to make it to the final, we have to score at least two goals. So we have to have this mindset that it's possible. We are going to believe that if we bring the same performance, but now instead of missing the shots and missing the opportunities we are able to create, we are able to put the ball in the net, I think we can be in the final."
"I think we have to be a little more clinical in the box. However, I'm not really concerned. What is more concerning for a coach is when you do not create situations or chances to score goals. We were able, in the last three games, to create a lot of situations that we could score, but some details went against us. But I think that when it's going to come, we'll find the goals."
Goalkeeper Callum Irving
"You have to have confidence when you play against these teams. Especially being two-nil down, we know we're in a really tough position. But the tie is not over until it's over. You've seen it a lot in soccer, you have to play the game, it's not a foregone conclusion. So we're going to go there, trying to impose our way of playing, like we do every single game, home or away. We have to focus on the process rather than the result."
HOW TO WATCH
LIVE STREAM: OneSoccer.ca or OneSoccer mobile app
LISTEN: TSN 1200
TWITTER: Follow @OTTAWAFURYFC for LIVE updates #FuryFC #ForTheFury #canChamp
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