United’s streak snapped 02 Sep 14

Edmonton, AB. (Sunday, August 31st, 2014) – Minnesota United was handed its first defeat of the Fall Season by FC Edmonton on Sunday, with a score of two to one. Second half goals from Chad Burt and Lance Laing put the home side on top, with Daniel Mendes getting United’s lone goal. 

“We started the second half very well again,” said Minnesota Head Coach Manny Lagos. ”I thought we were on the way up, but just by missing the chances we did I think the game was stretched and I think Edmonton came really in to the game then by taking care of those chances and getting the lead. It was a good day for them. We had our chances to take the control of the momentum of this game and we did, and when Edmonton had their chances they did as well.” 

The first half was dominated by United, who had the majority of possession. Minnesota had several chances from Christian Ramirez and Justin Davis that could’ve put the visitors on top, but near misses and strong goalkeeping prevented the Loons from taking the lead. 

FC Edmonton was able to get a few shots off as well, relying on quick counter-attacks early on. Midfielder Lance Laing made his presence throughout the first half, making runs down the left side and feeding dangerous crosses into the Minnesota defensive box. Laing also took a few shots himself, however none were much trouble for Minnesota United goalkeeper Mitch Hildebrandt.

Minnesota continued to dominate possession early in the second half, but the quick counter-attacks by Edmonton took a toll on United. Minnesota thought they were going to have a throw in, but a quick touch by Edmonton defender Kareem Moses opened up a run down the left of the pitch. Tome Ameobi’s shot was blocked, causing to the ball to fall to the feet of striker Chad Burt, who flicked the ball past Hildebrandt to make it 1-0 for Edmonton in the 64th minute.

It took just seven minutes for Edmonton to double its lead. Lance Laing found open space on the left side of the Minnesota penalty area, took a touch inside and fired through traffic. The ball curled around the outstretched arms of the Minnesota goalkeeper, and found its way to the top right corner of the net.

Minnesota was scrambling as the game went on, pushing more men forward to try and generate offense. A foul just outside the Edmonton penalty area against Minnesota forward Rafael Burgos, gave Minnesota a golden opportunity to get back in the game. Daniel Mendes stepped up and curled the ball over the wall to the left post to cut Edmonton’s lead in half. An identical free kick just minutes later could’ve tied the match for Minnesota, but this time Lance Parker made the save.

With the loss, Minnesota remains second in the NASL Fall Standings with 17 points, behind the 19 points of the San Antonio Scorpions. Minnesota will return to NSC Stadium in Blaine to take on the Tampa Bay Rowdies Saturday September 6th.