In their first game in franchise history, Atletico Ottawa managed a 2-2 draw versus York 9 FC on Saturday in Prince Edward Island.
Atlético jumped out to an early 2-0 lead with goals from Mohamed Kourouma and Malcolm Isaiah Shaw.
Kourouma scored the first goal in franchise history.
In the 50th minute, Atlético player Vashon Neufville was shown a second yellow card of the afternoon.
Following Neufville’s dismissal, goals from 16-year old Lowell Wright and Joseph Di Chiara‘s (penalty) drew York 9 even. Even with the extra man, York 9 could not find the winner.
Atlético Ottawa Head Coach and General Manager Mista was happy with how his team performed. However, he acknowledged that the red card altered his team’s game plan.
He further stated, through his translator, “I think if it would’ve stayed 11 against 11, throughout the whole match, things would be much different right now […] [especially] without having any preseason game beforehand, but that’s the reality, everyone’s in the same boat so we will move forward”.
On the other hand, Coach Jim Brennan was disappointed to concede late in the first half and early second half, citing a mental lapse from his players.
“That should never happen, […] but that is something we’ve got to correct […]”
York 9 FC started the second half flat-footed but as the half progressed the York Region team increased their pressure on their opposition. A tactical change from a diamond 4-4-2 into a 4-3-3 allowed York 9’s younger players to get more into the action.
For Coach Brennan, the younger players now pose a healthy dilemma. This provides flexibility to rotate his players more frequently. In the long run, helping to combat the short turnaround between games.
Both coaches underlined the importance of managing player workloads during the Island games.
Atlético Ottawa face Valour FC on Wednesday, August 19, 2020 at 1 pm.
York 9 take on Pacific FC on Tuesday, August 18, 2020 at 1 pm.
Both teams will look to get their first wins of the season in their next games.