Perez finds his first goal with the Strikers to tie the game; Sanchez shutout streak comes to an end at 353 minutes. PHOTO: TONY LEWIS, FC EDMONTON
Fort Lauderdale, FL (September 15, 2013) – The Strikers come home from Edmonton with a 1-1 tie against the Eddies at Clarke Stadium, giving them a five-game undefeated streak and is currently tied for second place in the league. The weather in Edmonton was a big factor as the teams had to play with winds of between 20-30 miles per hour. The next game for the Strikers will be against the New York Cosmos as the two teams battle for first place in the league.
The Strikers found themselves down one goal and two coaches at the half. FC Edmonton’s Lance Laing scored off a free kick in the 37th minute on a sequence of events that caused both Strikers coaches, Head Coach Günter Kronsteiner and assistant coach Ricardo Lopes, as well as forward Walter Restrepo to get ejected from the game. The controversy started after Edmonton took a free kick, but the ball started rolling before Laing kicked it. The referees gave the Eddies a second chance at the free kick and second attempt was good to give Edmonton the 1-0 lead.
The Strikers players and bench were up in arms as they felt Edmonton should not have gotten the chance to re-take the kick and that’s when the referees ejected Kronsteiner, Lopes and Restrepo from the bench.
The goal by Edmonton also ended goalkeeper Richard Sanchez's consecutive shutout minutes at 353, just six minutes short of the league record.
Despite not having any coaches on the bench, the Strikers came out strong in the second half, using the wind to their advantage, and forcing Lance Parker to make several saves. Yaikel Pérez scored his first goal in a Strikers uniform in the 58th minute to tie the game at 1-1. Martin Nuñez received a cross and aimed the shot at the net, but Edmonton keeper Parker kicked it away. Perez found the rebound and was able to put it into the net despite a deflection by Parker.
After the Strikers’ goal Edmonton went into the offensive and seemed to control the ball most of the half. Edmonton had several chances in the second half including an on-goal scissor kick by Michael Cox, but Sanchez was solid, stopping all the shots that came his way in the second half.
The Strikers will battle for the top place in the league as they take on the New York Cosmos this Saturday, September 21st at Lockhart Stadium at 7:30 p.m. ET. This match will mark the first time in over 30 years that the Strikers and Cosmos have faced off at Lockhart Stadium. The Cosmos currently stand in first place, while the Strikers are just one point behind. Tickets for all upcoming home games are available for purchase online at www.strikers.com, or by calling 954-606-0400. Call or visit Strikers.com for more information. Follow the Strikers onFacebook,Twitterand Instagram.
FCE – Laing 37’
FTL – Perez 58’
FC EDMONTON (4-3-3) – Lance Parker; Antonio Rago; David Proctor; Albert Watson; Lance Laing; Gagan Dosanjh (Massimo Mirabelli, 76); Robert Garrett (Michael Cox, 64); Neil Hlavaty; Chris Nurse;Daryl Fordyce; Corey Hertzog (Sadi Jalali, 82)
Unused Substitutes: John Smits;; Wes Knight; Shaun Saiko;; Chris de Guise
FORT LAUDERDALE (4-4-1-1) – Richard Sánchez; Stéphane Guillaume; Rafael Alves; Stefan Antonijevic; Iván Guerrero (C); Darnell King; Manny Gonzalez (Carlos Salazar, 63); Toni Ståhl; Martin Nuñez (Bradlee Baladez, 76) ; Paulo Jr. (Justin Chavez, 85); Yaikel Pérez
Unused substitutes: Lionel Brown, Walter Restrepo,
BOOKING SUMMARY –
FCE – Herzog (caution) 45’; Nurse (caution) 45’
FTL – Restrepo (ejection) 40’