Highlanders host NASL’s FC Edmonton in first of two July exhibition matches
VICTORIA – Victoria Highlanders FC will host their first of two July exhibition matches Wednesday, facing professional soccer club FC Edmonton, 6:00 p.m. at the University of Victoria’s Centennial Stadium before also hosting Glasgow Rangers at the same venue later in the month.
Edmonton will be preparing for the fall portion of their North American Soccer League season while Victoria is in the midst of a three-game week that also featured competition against Sounders U-23 last weekend. The team returns to Royal Athletic Park on Saturday to host Lane United.
The Highlanders are coming off a scoreless, June 28 draw against Sounders U-23 that pushed them to within four points of the Premier Development League’s Northwest Division lead. Goalkeeper Brandon Watson made his third straight start between the woodwork for Victoria, earning his second clean sheet in a row.
Wednesday will serve as an important tilt for Highlanders head coach Steve Simonson and his squad, who will be able to implement their system against top-level talent before embarking on their three remaining PDL regular season games.
FC Edmonton arrived in Victoria Monday afternoon after a 5-1 victory over Kamloops Men’s All-Stars on Sunday, June 29 at McArthur Island Park. Sunday’s match was the first of three preseason matches for Edmonton as they prepare for the second leg of their season. Former Highlanders head coach Colin Miller rotated his Edmonton roster frequently in Kamloops, using no less than three goalkeepers through 90 minutes of play. It will be the first time Miller and Simonson will coach against each other at this level of soccer.
“I’ve know Colin for many, many years,” explained Simonson following the exhibition match announcement. “I consider him a good friend and he’s done a lot of good things for soccer in Western Canada and for Canada with the national team. Its been a privilege to work with him and it will be a lot of fun to coach against him in this setting.”
Edmonton currently sit in ninth place in their league table, with Northern Ireland’s Daryl Fordyce leading the roster with five goals in nine appearances this season. The team will head to face MLS side Seattle Sounders FC following Wednesday’s match against Victoria.
Kick-off at Centennial Stadium between the Highlanders and FC Edmonton is set for 6:00 p.m. PST. Seating is general admission and tickets can be purchased at www.selectyourtickets.ca or by calling 250-220-7777. Tickets will also be available on site at game day.
Wednesday’s match is the first of two July exhibition matches the Highlanders will host at Centennial Stadium, with world-famous Glasgow Rangers FC arriving July 21 to take on the Highlanders at 6:00 p.m. The pair of exhibition matches represent the Highlanders efforts to establish themselves as the top small-market sports franchise in North America. For more information on these matches and the Highlanders FC organization, please visit www.highlandersfc.ca.