OKC Energy FC had their first road test of 2018 on Saturday. They lost the match 4-1 to Phoenix Rising FC. Two FC Dallas players, Jordan Cano and Ema Twumasi, started the game. Francis Atuahene, the Energy’s goalscorer last week against the Tulsa Roughnecks FC, was out with calf tightness according to FC Dallas reporter Carter Baum.
Twumasi starts in place of Atuahene, who was dealing with some calf tightness this week. Cano with his second straight start for OKC. https://t.co/XQdXpl9CD6— Carter Baum (@CarterBaum) March 25, 2018
Twumasi and Cano Highlights:
Cano was part of a backline that gave up four goals. He also made some great defensive plays. He had an on and off kind of game. He’ll need to try to find some consistency in future matches. Cano had a worrying giveaway (7:07 in the video above), but he made up for it by winning the ball back, and it seemed like an uncommon mistake from him because his ball control and passing generally looks excellent.
Cano played a large role in the Energy FC’s consolation goal. OKC had a free kick, and Cano put a great shot on target to force a save from the Phoenix keeper. Christian Ibeagha was able to tap the ball home off the rebound from the keeper.
The last Phoenix goal showed a lack of chemistry and/or communication between Cano and the rest of the OKC backline. Cano stepped forward at just the right moment to have put Phoenix forward Chris Cortez in an offside position, but the other OKC center back did not step with him, so Cortez was left onside and he put the ball in the back of the net.
Twumasi lined up on the wing, he showed a decent ability to track back and defend. He also showed several times his strength and ability to hold up and shield the ball. Twumasi played alright, but he did not influence the game enough. He played a lot of safe passes, which is good, but he did not provide many dangerous chances in this particular game.
While neither Cano or Twumasi was particularly bad, neither of them was a real difference maker, either. The entire OKC Energy team got shut down by Phoenix Rising, and neither was able to play an important role for the Energy in this game, but they will have another chance midweek at home.
OKC Energy will be at home Wednesday, March 28, against Orange County SC at 7:30 p.m.