Atlético Ottawa Overcomes Early Deficit to Draw With Cavalry FC

Atlético Ottawa Overcomes Early Deficit to Draw With Cavalry FC

On June 21st, Atlético Ottawa hit the road to face Cavalry FC at ATCO Field in Calgary, where the teams shared points in a 1-1 draw. The opening minutes of the match, following last week’s defeat, suggested that the Cold Fernando Winter may have finally thawed in the summer heat. However, Atléti came back fighting to remind the league why they’re sitting 5 points ahead of second place at the top of the table.

Ottawa started the match disjointed, evident as the home side netted a goal in the second minute. Diego Gutiérrez whipped a corner into the center of the visitor’s box, finding Malcolm Shaw, who headed the ball towards Nathan Ingham’s top right corner. Ingham parried the ball, but not far enough to prevent an unmarked Tobias Warschewski from volleying it into the opposite corner, giving Cavalry a 1-0 lead.

With Ottawa eager to score and Cavalry determined to secure the win, the match continued with both teams exchanging possession and creating chances in each other’s ends, making for an eventful match. In the 6th minute, Ollie Bassett sought out Aboubacar Sissoko at the edge of the penalty area, who then maneuvered past Calgarian defenders deeper into the box and passed back towards Rubén Del Campo. The Swiss striker attempted a shot from the 18-yard line but skied it over the net. He had a similar strike in the 9th minute after receiving a forward ball from Bassett, flicked on by Gutiérrez by mistake, but again it missed the target.

Photo © CPL

Quick to retaliate, Daan Klomp sent a long ball to Fraser Aird on the far side of the field in the 11th minute. Aird sent it forward to Shaw at the edge of the 18-yard line, who struck from a distance, but he sent the shot wide. This happened just after Klomp delivered the ball forward to Lleyton Brooks, but he misjudged the distance and Ingham caught it at the top of his area. Four minutes later, Lucas Dias passed centrally to Warschewski from the left flank. Alberto Zapater almost intercepted the ball, but Warschewski skillfully flicked it back to Dias who was running in to support, and he struck from outside the penalty arc, missing the goal.

In the 18th minute, Ballou Tabla had a promising opportunity to equalize. Zapater sent a long ball to him in the box, and after controlling it, Tabla feigned a shot with his left foot before striking with his right. However, he slipped in the process, leading Eryk Kobza to deflect the ball before Klomp cleared it. The game continued with rapid field transitions – Kris Twardek cleared a Cavalry pass into Ottawa’s box, but Gutiérrez quickly regained possession and found Warschewski unmarked at the top of the area. The striker made an attempt, but slipped in the process and aimed the ball directly at Ingham for an easy save.

Ottawa continued to push for the equalizer with three more attempts in the 23rd, 26th, and 34th minute. First Twardek nutmegged Brooks and serviced the ball to Bassett, who lofted it over the bar. Del Campo then cut the ball into Cavalry’s end, but no Ottleti players were there to capitalize on his cross, which was cleared but intercepted by Zapater and delivered to Sissoko. Sissoko fed the ball across the frame, but neither Del Campo nor Tabla reached it. Moments later, Bassett set up Sissoko at the top of the arc for an attempt deflected by Kobza – the ricochet wasn’t enough to divert the ball off target and it floated into Marco Carducci’s arms on the goal line.

Ottawa finally broke through in the 39th minute and equalized, after Sissoko intercepted Tom Field’s pass to Dias and launched the ball to Tabla. After a series of failed clearances and scuffed blocks, the ball eventually squirted out to the left flank. Del Campo retrieved it and under pressure from Aird, he waited for Zapater’s entry into the penalty area, flicking the ball up to Zapater at the 10-yard line. With Carducci diving to his left, Zapater headed the ball into the far corner of the net, leveling the score.

Just before the equalizer, Cavalry had a chance to extend their lead. In the 37th minute, Gutiérrez distributed to Warschewski, who then sent the ball to the touchline for Aird approaching on his right. De Brienne blocked Aird’s shot with an extended leg, however, sending it out for a corner. Gutiérrez chose to play the dead ball short down the flank to Aird, who struck from distance into the box. Field got his head to it at the far post, redirecting it towards the near one, as they did earlier. Ingham, Twardek and Warschewski all challenged for the ball and collided mid-air, ending the play.

Photo © CPL

The last action of the half came when Warschewski won a set piece in the 46th minute. Aird took the kick aiming for the penalty area, and Del Campo and Klomp both leapt to meet it, with Klomp diverting it to Warschewski at the top of the box. Warschewski struck from there, and Shaw attempted to flick it on, but it sailed wide. Ottawa quickly counterattacked, and Bassett’s shot from the left flank was blocked for a corner. He took it, targeting Luke Singh at the far post, who beat Shaw to the ball, but headed it high over the crossbar.

Starting the second half with gusto, Cavalry aimed to replicate their early success, taking a shot in the 49th minute. Warschewski initiated a long pass, switching play to the left flank. Twardek and Brooks raced for the ball, with Brooks reaching it first at the byline and feeding it back to Dias, who took a few touches before finding Shaw at the 18-yard line. Despite Singh and Didić marking him tightly, Shaw found Warschewski who fired and missed the target.

The home team then created several changes in quick succession; continuing to threaten Ottawa’s defense, Brooks attempted to penetrate Atlético’s box in the 51st minute, but Didić cleared his shot. However, Didić’s clearance went to Fields who crossed the ball to Warschewski open at the 6-yard line. His shot, aimed for the near post, was deflected by Ingham, and Aparicio cleared the ball from danger. Ingham made another impressive save just seven minutes later, an attempt by Warschewski from the top of the arc, forcing him to dive low to his right and collect the ball. Then, in the 56th minute, Shaw received a pass from Dias and maneuvered past Didić and shot, but it went over the net. They tested Ingham again in the 58th minute, as Warschewski struck from the top of the arc, forcing Ingham to dive low to his right with outstretched arms to make the catch.

Relentless, de Brienne fed the ball to Aparicio in the 59th minute, who carried it forward and served it to Sissoko inside the box. Sissoko took the shot, but Klomp slid in with an outstretched leg to block it, sending the ball out for a corner. Aparicio managed to volley the ball after Brooks initially cleared the resulting corner, but he missed the frame. Aparicio had another beautiful moment in the 85th minute, when his ball ricocheted off the crossbar.

Just minutes later, at the other end of the field, Warschewski collected the ball at the edge of the box and delivered it wide to Brooks. He crossed it in, and although de Brienne managed to get his head to the ball, he couldn’t clear it, sending it straight to Aird’s feet. Aird took the shot, but de Brienne deflected it, this time clearing it up field to Bassett.

In the 80th minute, Ballou charged down the center of the field and managed to pass to Del Campo despite being taken down by Klomp. Del Campo dribbled into the box and angled a shot towards goal. Carducci dove to his right to make the crucial save, preventing Ottawa from taking a late lead. The match continued with Brooks attempting a long-range strike in the 87th minute that posed no threat to Ingham, who dealt with another high ball in the 90th minute.

Photo © CPL

The final opportunity of the match came in the 94th minute when Callum Montgomery took a set piece near the halfway line. He found Charlie Trafford on the right edge of the box and Trafford controlled the ball and sent it towards the far post – Ingham leaped to make the catch, securing the game ending 1-1 draw.

Overall, both teams played well and were evenly matched, despite Ottawa’s slow start. Unfortunately, neither team was able to capitalize on the countless opportunities seen in the second half and they ultimately shared the points.

Come on out to TD Place on June 28th at 7 PM to see first place Atlético Ottawa play fifth place Forge FC. The last time these teams met, Ottawa came ahead with a 3-0 win over the four-time league champions and will be looking for only their second win in six after a slight stumble in form.

About the Author

C.D. Girard (she/her/elle) discovered Atlético Ottawa during their 2023 season and has been a loyal fan ever since. A long-time admirer of the sport, she first began playing football at the age of seven and most looks forward to international competitions where she supports both Canada and the Netherlands.

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