Moncton soccer team is 1-0 on the season
Neil Hodge Times & TranscripT
It’s a grudge match for the Moncton Tom Cormier Co-operators First Touch.
They will visit the defending champion Fredericton Wanderers tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. at Scotiabank North Field in McCain New Brunswick Premier Soccer League action. The Wanderers defeated Moncton 2-0 in the league semifinal last season.
“It’s a redemption match for us,” said Moncton head coach Patrick Gautreau. “It’s also a measuring stick to show how we compare to them at this stage in the season. The Fredericton Wanderers lost a couple of players, but the core of their group is still there.
“They have a lot of the same character players back from last season. They’re a physical team and they move the ball around very well. They play a lot of long balls out of the back so that’s something we need to look out for.”
Prince Edward Island FC, 4-0, sits atop the five-team league and Moncton, 1-0, is next. The Wanderers, 0-2, and Fundy United, 0-3, are looking to break into the win column and the Fredericton Reds haven’t started their 12-game regular season.
All four New Brunswick teams make the playoffs. P.E.I. doesn’t participate in the playoffs. Moncton will play its home opener against the Reds on Sunday at 6 p.m. at the Crandall University field.
Moncton has never won the championship and the league is in its fifth season. Moncton, which expects to have its best team ever this season got started with a 3-1 win over Fundy United.
“We talked before the season about the depth of our team and we showed it in that game,” said Gautreau.“It was really the substitutes that made the difference. It was 0-0 at halftime and we made a couple of substitutions. The new players came in hungry to make a difference and they did make a difference.
“That was our first game and it was Fundy’s third game so they already had their legs. They were used to battles on the field and we hadn’t played in two weeks since winning the (pre-season) Maritime Champions League Tournament. We were a little rusty, but we got things going full throttle in the second half.”