2020 CPL regular season (The Island Games) — Match #28 FC Edmonton vs. Pacific FC Sept. 6, 2020 at 3:00 p.m ET/4:00 p.m. AT UPEI Artificial Turf Field in Charlottetown, PEI Watch Live: OneSoccer.ca/CHCH
The Canadian Premier League first-round finale on Sunday pits last-place FC Edmonton against Pacific FC, who faces a must-win situation in order qualify for the second round at The Island Games.
Pacific arrives after allowing a heartbreaking last-minute goal against Atlético Ottawa in a 1-0 midweek loss. That result put Pa-Modou Kah’s side outside of the CPL top four, on eight points from six matches. With back-to-back wins last week all-but-forgotten, Kah’s group is facing adversity squarely in the face – three points against Edmonton would see them advance, but a draw or loss means elimination.
The Eddies will try to end their 2020 CPL season on a high. Winless at The Island Games, Jeff Paulus’ group was officially eliminated from contention following a 1-0 loss to York9 on Tuesday. It was the second match in PEI where the Eddies failed to record a shot on target, but the first game they didn’t concede multiple goals.
Pacific FC needs a win to qualify for The Island Games second round. A draw or loss would see Pacific eliminated, and York9 FC moving on.
Soak up the pressure: FC Edmonton will need to stymy Pacific FC’s snappy midfield to get a result. The Tridents’ direct and quick build-up style is best countered by a low block – something the Eddies have done well in at times – and counter-attacking quickly and effectively. Easton Ongaro’s underrated pace alongside diminutive attackers Keven Alemán and Hanson Boakai could be the answer, especially if Pacific’s fullbacks push up high.
Stay calm: To the above point, the last thing Pacific FC wants is to be chasing a win late and letting nerves get to them. Pa-Modou Kah’s squad must stay controlled in the final third. Of course, being the last match of the group stage won’t help the mental battle, but there’s solace in controlling in their hands. Just don’t lose your cool.
Stop Keven Alemán: How the Tridents deal with FC Edmonton’s undersized creative maestro could be the story of the match. The 26-year-old attacking midfielder has been FCE’s lone attacking bright spot, with most of Edmonton’s bright attacking movements coming through him. If Pacific can mark him out of the match (looking at you, Matthew Baldisimo), they’ll make life easier for themselves.