HIGHLIGHTS: Atletico Ottawa vs. Forge FC (August 27, 2022)
Atlético Ottawa remains top of the Canadian Premier League table after a 0-0 home draw with Forge at TD Place Stadium. Forge, meanwhile, drops to third with the draw as a win for Cavalry earlier in the day vaults them into second place in the table. The Hamilton side, however, do still have two games in hand on both Ottawa and Cavalry.
It was a slow and cautious start to the match, as both sides settled into their expected roles. Forge controlled possession but was not able to shift the ball into any dangerous areas in the Ottawa third. Atleti, meanwhile, were their usual patient selves in defense, looking for Forge to make a mistake so that they could catch them on the break, but the visitors were well-disciplined.
Atleti finally got the first shot of the match in the 20th minute, after some great offensive buildup. They were able to isolate Max Tissot in the box, but the defender didn’t get enough power on his shot and it went straight into the hands of Triston Henry.
They came close again seven minutes later as Miguel Acosta found Ollie Bassett down the wing, the Atleti midfielder’s cross was dangerously redirected in behind by Forge defender Dom Samuel, who nearly put it into his own net. Ottawa had another solid chance in the 32nd minute, but Ballou Tabla’s shot was blocked well by Alex Achinioti-Jonsson.
As the half went on, Ottawa grew more and more in confidence and attacking impetus as they started to fully come out of their defensive shell and had some good moments of possession that led to a few dangerous sequences around the Forge box. Forge meanwhile, was limited to just a single shot on target, and two attempts during the opening 45 minutes. The two sides went into the half-time break goalless
Ottawa continued to threaten going forward to start the second half. They forced a corner in the 47th minute when Miguel Acosta’s clever low cross required a shaky intervention from the Forge backline. The corner came to nothing in the end, but Ottawa was able to maintain possession well to open the half.
Forge was finally able to find a moment of attacking joy in the 57th minute as they turned a giveaway from Ottawa forward quickly. The ball ended up at the foot of Woobens Pacius at the top of the box, but the striker dragged his shot just wide of a scrambling Sean Melvin’s net.
Tabla had a chance of his own from outside the box after more good buildup from Ottawa in the 70th minute. He made some space for himself at the top of the box with a clever cut, but his strike ultimately rose over the net. Bassett would try from distance moments later, but his strike didn’t trouble Henry.
Perhaps inspired, Kyle Bekker fired an absolute rocket from long distance of his own in the 74th minute which struck the underside of the crossbar and looked to have crossed the line but was ruled no goal on the field.
The moment seemed to wake up the visitors, who enjoyed the bulk of possession through the late stages of the match. They were able to turn this into some rare looks inside the Ottawa box, including a Rezart Rama volley cross that was forced behind for a corner.
Shortly after the corner, Ottawa would quickly go the other way, finding Ballou Tabla behind the Forge backline. The Ottawa attacker beat several Forge defenders, but his wide shot was saved brilliantly by Henry.
That was the last major chance of the match, as the two sides finished with just three shots on target between the two sides (two for Ottawa, one for Forge).