May 19, 2024
  • May 19, 2024
Valour FC Chantzopoulos

Valour Vanquished, Suffer Record CanChamp Defeat To Atletico Ottawa

By on May 1, 2024 0 877 Views

Echoes of Valour’s record numbing 8-0 defeat from the club’s first year came roaring back amidst a record domestic cup defeat to Atletico Ottawa.

Ottleti stormed to a 7-0 win at TD Place in a match that saw Valour second-best from start to finish in what was a long night for Phillip Dos Santos and company, with his club now holding record defeats in both Canada’s top flight and its cup competition too.

It didn’t take long for the hosts to snatch the lead with referee Scott Bowman pointing to the penalty spot after former Valour full-back Matteo de Brienne collided with Abdou Samake in the box as both scrambled for possession after a Ruben Del Campo header pinged off the crossbar.

Up stepped reigning golden boot holder Ollie Bassett, who confidently blasted the ball to the left as Valour backup Darlington Murasoranwa dived dove opposite direction.

The hosts kept firm control of the momentum after going in front. Getting the lion’s share of chances would pay dividends throughout, as it happened.

The hosts went two for the good off a wonderful flick-on header from Alberto Zapater in the thirtieth minute, with Ottleti making good on a corner kick that couldn’t have been more well-placed.

Things went from bad to worse for Valour just one minute later as Ruben De Campo collected the ball after Winnipeg’s back line left far too much a gap after kickoff, with the Swiss striker slotting in a left-footed effort that left Murasiranwa no chance for redemption.

Defender Abdou Samake would then be taken off right after the goal due to a welt from his earlier collision with Matteo de Brienne, with midfielder Juan Sanchez coming on to replace him – Tass Mourdoukoutas, who was Valour’s primary defensive acquisition, would still await his debut.

The match would go beyond burried on another corner kick defensive misplay, with Darlington coming out to get the ball and never getting there: Alberto Zapater would get his head on it, scoring a rare brace in the veteran’s career. Just like that, it was four-nil and more than a mountain to climb for Valour.

The frustrations would leak from the visitors as big defender Charalampos Chantzopoulos picked up a yellow for a needless foul, the club’s third caution of the match. Incidentally, Valour was the first club fined for excessive yellows in the 2024 CPL season.

Del Campo would nearly bag a fifth five minutes before the half came to a close, but a desperate lunge from Murasiranwa would prevent danger in this instance.

Valour nearly pulled one back at the cusp of half-time, with Themi Antonoglou – who is quickly becoming one of the better crossers in the league – sending in a ball that Abdul Binate’s head led to the crossbar and out.

In an absolute nightmare for the visitors, they would concede back-to-back goals for the second time in the same night: both came from Ballou Tabla running rampant on the right flank, highlighting Valour’s inability to deal with repeat errors.

Tabla buried his side’s fifth, turning provider for the sixth as he set up a brace for Ollie Bassett, with the duo combing for a nice fusion celebration afterwards.

Valour may have been done and dusted by this point, but Atletico Ottawa wasn’t done yet: some lacklustre defending from Valour allowed a cross in that Matteo de Brienne couldn’t bury against his former side, but he was still able to keep possession square it back in for Ruben Del Campo.

Once again, Valour were second to the ball with the Swiss attacker burying it from close range, becoming the third Ottleti player to grab a brace on the night.

The referee’s whistle signalled what observers will have jotted down early in the first half: Atletico Ottawa were the clear winners of the night, marching on to a quarter final match against the winner of tonight’s Pacific FC vs TSS Rovers bout.

It was a tasty bit of revenge for a side that lost 6-1 to Valour in the regular season back in 2022, a night that will seem eons ago for the Winnipeg faithful. In what is surely a nightmare situation for Valour, the club will face a fixture repeat against Atletico Ottawa this Sunday in league play.

Atletico Ottawa has yet to lose in CPL action this year, while Valour fell to three straight losses.

Header Image Photo Credit: Matt Zambonin

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