April 26, 2011 MLS--Dutch Connection in Edmonton (from TorontoFC.ca)
Dutch Connection In Edmonton Asif Hossain TorontoFC.ca April 26, 2011 First-year North American Soccer League club FC Edmonton have won two of their three matches to start their inaugural season but are coming off a 2-0 loss to Carolina RailHawks. The Monties have only played away from home and will make their Edmonton debut in the first leg of the Nutrilite Canadian Championship against Toronto FC – Wednesday, April 27 at 8 p.m. ET on Rogers Sportsnet. In their first NASL match Edmonton defeated Fort Lauderdale 2-1 with Canadian midfielder Shaun Saiko scoring the club’s first goal and American forward Dan Antoniuk netting the winner. FCE won their second match a week later beating Atlanta 1-0 with Alex Surprenant – former Montreal Impact defender – scoring at the 11th minute and Edmonton doing well to close out the Silverbacks. Like Toronto, Edmonton has a Dutch flavor top to bottom. Head coach Harry Sinkgraven spent 13 seasons playing professional football in Holland. Goalkeeper Rein Baart spent four years at Dutch Eredivisie club N.E.C. before moving to Alberta, and former FC Gronigen midfielder Paul Matthijs is also on the squad. Edmonton has many other familiar Canadian faces to complement Surprenant, including Eddy Sidra who trialed with Toronto in preseason. Toronto will host Edmonton in the second leg on Wednesday, May 4 at BMO Field. RELATED: Toronto v. Edmonton (NCC semifinal 2nd leg) - May 4 at 8 p.m. The winner of Toronto-Edmonton over two legs will face either Vancouver or Montreal, depending on the outcome of the other NCC semifinal. Last season Toronto won the NCC for the second consecutive season, then went on to win the 2010-11 CONCACAF Champions League preliminary round 3-2 on aggregate over Honduran side Motagua. That triumph propelled the Reds to CCL Group Stage for the first time in club history, where they finished third and out of the knockout stage behind Champions League finalist Real Salt Lake and Mexico's Cruz Azul, who were ousted in the semifinals.
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