Atletico Ottawa vs HFX Wanderers takes place on April 15th as the Canadian Premier League kicks off its fifth season. The match will be played at TD Stadium in Ottawa and will start at 1:00 PM ET / 10 AM PT. It will also be the first match of the CPL season after Pacific FC versus Vancouver FC was rescheduled to later in the day.
Opening weekend vibes
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Atletico Ottawa Run of Form
Atletico Ottawa returned from their pre-season camp in Madrid about two weeks ago. The club played a total of six warm-up matches for the upcoming season, with a record of two wins, two losses, and two draws. Five of those games came while the club was in Spain, including its first pre-season match against third-tier Spanish side UD Sanse which ended in a two-all draw. In their next match, Atletico Ottawa faced off against parent club Atletico Madrid’s reserve side. The game ended in another draw, this time scoreless.
Ottawa followed up their two draws with a one-nil win, this time in a match against another La Liga side’s reserve team, Getafe. The two defeats the club suffered were consecutive matches. Ottawa lost to Real Madrid Castilla for the second time in two years. In their last match, before flying home to the nation’s capital, Ottawa recorded a 3-1 loss to another third-tier side, CF Fuenlabrada.
The club’s latest pre-season match was at TD Stadium in Ottawa. Opponents CF Montreal U23 saw a 6-1 thumping with last season’s CPL MVP Ollie Bassett getting a brace. Newcomers Gianni Dos Santos and Gabriel Antinoro also scored. Malcolm Shaw leads the way for Ottawa with a total of three goals over the course of the pre-season.
HFX Wanderers Current Run of Form
HFX Wanderers also hit the road for a majority of their pre-season, making a trip down to Florida. The Wanderers played a scrimmage against their U23 side in early March which they won handily before heading south. Their first two games were against prep-school Monteverde Academy and then Stetson University, an NCAA side. Newcomer Tiago Coimbra bagged a hat trick in one of the games but HFX did not reveal which one.
HFX Wanderers also faced MLS Next Pro competition, claiming a victory over Inter Miami II. Newcomer Callum Watson who joined from Creighton University netted a goal as did Wes Timoteo. To round out their Florida trip, HFX competed against the University of South Florida, another NCAA Division I school. Coimbra had a brace in the victory, furthering the belief that the youngster could be a massive revelation for the Wanderers this season.
HFX returned home to Canada and hosted two games at Dalhousie University’s Wickwire Field. Their first game was against semi-pro side Nepean Hotspurs from Ottawa. Tiago Coimbra scored an impressive four goals in the win. The Wanderer’s last game of pre-season was against Electric City FC which ended in a 3-0 victory for HFX.
Recent Head-to-Head Between Atletico Ottawa vs HFX Wanderers
Last season will be one for HFX to forget against Atletico Ottawa, not winning a single game against them all season. In fact, Ottawa won all four meetings last year. The last game between the two was on October 1st, 2022, in a match that ended 2-1 for Atletico Ottawa with Maxim Tissot and Zakaria Bahous both scoring for the visitors. Last year’s head-to-head between HFX and Atletico Ottawa also featured a dramatic 3-2 for Ottawa at TD Stadium when Ivan Perez notched a 90+1 winner.
Atletico Ottawa vs HFX Wanderers Prediction
Having seriously revamped their roster this off-season, HFX Wanderers will be looking to prove a point. Patrice Gheisar has come in as the new manager, with expectations that the club will look for a more attacking style this season. Much the same can be said about Carlos Gonzalez’s Atletico Ottawa side, despite the regular season success last season. With both clubs having an expectation to produce more chances, there is some potential for a barnburner. With that said, neither team will likely want to leave themselves too exposed on the season opener. Thus a 2-2 draw is the predicted score, with former HFX Wanderer Samuel Salter scoring a penalty for Atletico Ottawa.
Current Odds: Atletico Ottawa (-135) vs HFX Wanderers (+310)
Photo Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports, on Malcolm Shaw’s Headshot, of October 30, 2022.
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