2022 CPL Regular Season — Match #6 Atlético Ottawa vs. HFX Wanderers April 16, 2022 at 1:00 p.m. ET TD Place in Ottawa, Ontario Watch Live: OneSoccer.ca & TELUS Ch. 980 // Tickets available here

After both coming off 1-0 victories on the opening weekend of the season, Atlético Ottawa and HFX Wanderers will meet in their second matches of the season, on Saturday afternoon at TD Place in Ottawa.

Brian Wright's late penalty saw the home side win a week ago, with Wright scoring the winning goal in Ottawa's home opener for the second week in a row. Several new signings made their debuts for the club, including Ollie Bassett and Ballou Tabla among others, while right winger/right back Carl Haworth continues to recover from an injury and again isn't 100% healthy. He may not play a major role in Saturday's contest, according to head coach Carlos Gonzalez, and time will tell if he's able to make the squad entirely for this one.

Drew Beckie was sent off at the end of that match to stepping on David Norman Jr's foot, and has since received a three-match ban as punishment for it. Gonzalez said on Friday that "the only thing that [he] can change is who's going to play in his place", so these next three games will be a chance for others to step into his role and get some meaningful minutes here at the start of the season.

HFX Wanderers, meanwhile, began their season with a 1-0 victory away to York United, also winning on a penalty from star attacker Joao Morelli, who has had a lot of success against Atletico Ottawa in the past. He'll be looking to continue that good start to the season, as will the right sided duo of Cory Bent and Zachary Fernandez, who terrorized the York backline in match number one.

Halifax and Ottawa became familiar foes a season ago, playing each other six times in 2021. Halifax were the dominant team a year ago, winning three of the six games, with Ottawa winning once and the other two matches ending in draws. They also played each other once in the shortened 2020 season, a game which HFX also won. This is the the first of four meetings between the two sides in 2022.

Saturday's match is the second in a three-game homestand to start the season for Ottawa, and the second of three road games to begin the season for HFX Wanderers. Next week Ottawa will host Valour, and HFX travel to play Pacific, but Saturday's battle is very much the priority before then.

Make your match picks prior to kickoff at canpl.ca/predictor for a chance to win prizes, including the grand prize of a trip to the 2021 CPL Final! To learn more about ComeOn!, click here. All CPL matches are available to stream on OneSoccer, or on TELUS Optik TV Channel 980.


  • Carlos Gonzalez hoping to build on 1-0 win in first match: Last weekend, in Carlos Gonzalez's first match in charge of Atlético Ottawa, his side earned a 1-0 victory over a strong Cavalry side. Brian Wright scored the winning goal with a late penalty in front of a good crowd in the nation's capital, and Nathan Ingham kept a clean sheet in his debut for the club -- two parts of what Gonzalez described as the "perfect" start to life in the CPL. "I was proud of the competitiveness that we showed on the field, I think that the team was very solid, very compact -- we played a very tough game against a team that's going to be fighting for the playoffs and high positions in the league," Gonzalez said on Friday. "Of course we have to improve a lot of things, but I think it was a great start. Also there was a great atmosphere with our fans -- I think everything was nearly perfect. We are demanding, so we cannot say perfect, but I think that everything surrounding the first match was very good."​
  • Joao Morelli had Ottawa's number a season ago: Joao Morelli won the Golden Boot and Player of the Year awards, scoring 14 goals in 21 league matches and becoming a vital player for HFX Wanderers. Remarkably, six of those goals came against Atletico Ottawa alone. Morelli scored twice on August 2, twice more on August 29, and added a third brace against the capital city club on September 11. Despite his track record, Atletico Ottawa boss Carlos Gonzalez isn't worried "I think that Morelli of course is a great player, but Halifax has a good attack so we cannot only focus on one player, because if not we will make mistakes with other players," said Gonzalez on Friday. "I think that we have to be in control of the game and play the game that we want, so that the strikers on the other team are not comfortable in any moment." After Morelli scored a penalty against York United in the season-opener, Wanderers head coach Stephen Hart came to the Brazilian's defence, reminding everyone that Morelli isn't just a one-dimensional player, but arguably the best attacker in the league when he's fit and firing. "He missed a lot of games last year, a lot of people don't talk about that. I think some of the things that were said about the goals only coming against one team and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah has spurred him on. He has that intrinsic motivation to be at his best, and I'm grateful for it and his teammates support him very well."​
  • Can Ottawa get Ballou Tabla more involved on the wing?: Ottawa's biggest offseason signing, Ballou Tabla, looked sharp in his debut last weekend on the occasions when he got the ball, but those opportunities were sometimes few and far between against Cavalry. Playing in a less familiar right wingback role, Tabla hit the crossbar with an early shot in the first half, and had a couple of good runs on the wing, but wasn't as involved or high up the pitch that someone with his talent needs to be. Carlos Gonzalez said in his pregame press conference that the team needs to work on getting him the ball more often. "The problem was not because he was isolated, it's because we didn't bring the ball to him. We worked on certain situations, on how to get the ball to the flanks, and during the game because of different circumstances we weren't able to turn the play from one side to the other side. Let's see if we can improve in those situations during the next matches."​


Atlético Ottawa wins: 1 || HFX Wanderers wins: 4 || Draws: 2

Previous match:

November 7, 2021 – HFX Wanderers 1-0 Atlético Ottawa


"One of the threats of Halifax is how they play on the flanks, and the offensive players that they have -- players with high speed that they can break into the space. We have been working on these situations, but the reality is that we have been focusing on our own development. This is the main point that we have to focus on at the moment, on us and Atletico Ottawa, and how we can improve and be better." -- Atlético Ottawa head coach Carlos Gonzalez

"They have very good players in all parts of the park. You have Shaw, who's a proven goalscorer in the league, Wright who can cause a lot of problems. We know what the team consists of, and we have to stick to our gameplan and how we approach games when we are away from home, and keep our discipline as well. If we do that and take our opportunities that we do get in the game, you can see what happens." -- HFX Wanderers head coach Stephen Hart

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