Join soccerly to save and share the best soccer stories
Sign up with Facebook
By login in with Facebook you agree on the terms and conditions specified here

 
 
Despite a fourth consecutive sellout and bright contributions from a pair of on-loan youngsters, Indy Eleven fell 4-2 to Ottawa Fury FC in a wild encounter between NASL expansion clubs Saturday night at Michael A. Carroll Stadium.
Capacity Indy Crowd Sees First Half to Remember, Another Result to Forget
05/18/2014
 
In losing 4-2 to Ottawa Fury FC, Indy Eleven dropped its fourth consecutive game Saturday night--and its first by multiple goals.

Despite a fourth consecutive sellout and bright contributions from a pair of on-loan youngsters, Indy Eleven fell 4-2 to Ottawa Fury FC in a wild encounter between NASL expansion clubs Saturday night at Michael A. Carroll Stadium.


On an evening Kleberson missed with a hamstring injury, Montreal Impact loanee Blake Smith made an impressive debut and drew a penalty for the home side, while 19-year-old center forward Ben Spencer opened his Indy Eleven late in the first half with an exquisitely taken goal.


But neither contribution was enough to offset a host of defensive lapses that were ruthlessly punished. On their inaugural trip to Indy, the Canadian visitors found the net twice through journeyman midfielder Tony Donatelli, who moved into a tie for second place in the NASL with three goals, while Oliver and Omar Jarun comprised the rest of the strikeforce for the Fury, who led 3-2 at halftime.


An announced figure of 10,285 fans—which once again appeared legitimate—could not spur the club to an equalizer that would have almost certainly set off scenes of pandemonium. An ambitious Brad Ring volley from well outside the box in the 57th minute came closest to completing the comeback, but his effort flew inches over the crossbar in front of an exasperated Brickyard Battalion supporters section.


The balance of power then shifted toward the Fury in the 68th minute, as Ottawa extended its lead to 4-2 when Brazilian forward Oliver bundled home a finely timed cross from Carl Haworth, who waited until the last possible second to square the ball to his Brazilian teammate.  

"You shouldn’t have to come home and think you need to score three or four goals to win the game."
-juergen sommer, indy eleven head coach-

The loss leaves the Eleven (2 pts., 0-4-2) still winless and further adrift at the bottom of the NASL standings. With ninth-place FC Edmonton holding the San Antonio Scorpions to a 0-0 draw later Saturday night, Indy now finds itself three full points behind the Eddies, who recorded a 2-1 win in the Hoosier capital a week ago.


“You shouldn’t have to come home and think you need to score three or four goals to win the game,” said Indy Eleven Head Coach Juergen Sommer. “We need to improve considerably defensively overall. The chances we gave them, they took very well. That was the differentiator tonight. When you give up two goals that quickly, it’s very hard for any team.”


Ominous clouds had moved through central Indiana for most of an unseasonably cool afternoon, but the sun shone brightly over another packed crowd at Carroll Stadium at kickoff. Before the “Expansion Derby” commenced in earnest, though, Indy Eleven’s latest bid for an inaugural victory was dealt a blow; star signing Kléberson emerged from the locker room in a suit, nursing what Sommer later described as a hamstring strain in his left leg.


Some clever interplay created the first opening of the match in the seventh minute, as a deft flick from Oliver floated the ball into the path of Dantas, but the latter screwed his effort well left of the frame.

The breakthrough for the visitors, who had neither scored first nor won on the road previously, came in the 16th minute. That it came as the result of an error from the right back position was at once discouraging and fitting for the home side. Andrew Stone, the fourth player to fill the role in the first six games, misplayed an attempted back heel pass in the defensive third; mere seconds later, Donatelli punished the flub, firing a left-footed drive from a central position into the lower-left corner to give Ottawa an early 1-0 lead.

"A little bit of acting helped with [the penalty call], but you’ve got to take it when you can get it. I was just fortunate the ref was able to call that."
-blake smith, indy eleven (on loan from montreal impact)-

Not long after, Indy was back on level terms. Nineteen minutes into his debut, and not much longer into his stay in Indianapolis, Blake Smith, whose flight landed on Thursday, blazed past a Fury defender and drew apparent contact in the box, prompting the referee to point to the spot. Mike Ambersley promptly dispatched the resulting penalty to level the score at 1-1.


“I was just trying to take on the guy, and I let the ball get away from me a little bit,” Smith said after the match. “A little bit of acting helped with that one, but you’ve got to take it when you can get it. I was just fortunate the ref was able to call that.”


From the perspective of his new coach, Smith’s presence was one of the salient positives in a contest that will be remembered in Indy for few of them.


“It’s great to have Blake here, and we’re excited to get him on loan from Montreal,” Sommer said. “I thought he was very electric on the field, very dynamic on the ball. He did some great things running at their defense, creating some opportunities and windows for us. Obviously, he drew the penalty kick, so we expect a lot of great things from Blake. He’s a very creative player and has a lot of pace.”


While Smith arrived in Indy as an entity known to wreak havoc in attack, Fury central defender Omar Jarun is usually tasked with stopping players of such caliber in their tracks. Yet Jarun, a member of the Palestinian national team, assumed unfamiliar duties in the 40th minute, prodding home from a corner kick that Richie Ryan had already redirected to reestablish the visitors' advantage at 2-1.


Donatelli proceeded to compound the misery for Indy Eleven just two minutes later. After some nifty footwork in the box that allowed him time to move the ball to his left foot, he unleashed his second unstoppable shot of the half past Kristian Nicht and into the top-left corner.  

"We want to win, the fans want to win, the whole club wants to win. We’ll do everything we can, keep working hard, and hope for the best."
-ben spencer, indy eleven (on loan from molde)-

Down 3-1 and desperate for a shot in the arm before halftime, Indy Eleven immediately received the boost it needed from Ben Spencer, who could hardly have picked a more opportune moment to net his first goal for the club. In the 44th minute, the teenage target man controlled a lofted through ball from Dylan Mares brilliantly, skipped behind the defense and into the box, and clinically slotted across his body and into the bottom right corner.


Ultimately, though, the goal that clawed the game back to a manageable 3-2 deficit was to be a red herring; the turnaround never materialized.


“We want to win, the fans want to win, the whole club wants to win,” Spencer said following the thwarted comeback attempt. “We’ll do everything we can, keep working hard, and hope for the best.”


Smith, who described his first taste of the atmosphere at Carroll Stadium as “really impressive,” struck an equally optimistic, if less defiant tone after the game.


“There’s a lot of positives to be taken from tonight’s game, I think,” Smith said. “Obviously, I’m not used to playing with these guys, but there’s something here. I think we have a really strong attacking core. We put in goals tonight, and when you score two goals, you should never lose at home, so obviously that shows that defensively we need to work on some things. But you know, it’s a young team, and they haven’t been playing together very long, so I think it will come together as the season goes on.”

 
2
   
More stories
 
6
   
 
1
   
 
0
   
 
2
   
 
2
   
 
1
   
 
1
   
 
1
   
 
0
   
 
1