Ottawa Fury Announce Partnership with FC Montreal

IMAGE, MATT KREMKAU FOR EMPIRE OF SOCCER

by ANTHONY J. MERCED

The worst kept secret in soccer is now confirmed as the USL’s Ottawa Fury have announced that they are entering into a partnership with the MLS franchise Montreal Impact.

“This partnership is a fantastic opportunity to grow soccer and comes with both business and technical benefits,” said Ottawa Head Coach Paul Dalglish. “We are and will remain an independent club. We are proud of our identity and excited for the opportunities that this relationship will provide both our organizations – including work on player development pathway.”

The partnership will see the Fury work with the Impact in order to identify players that could join the USL squad over the next season. Along with that, Dalglish will be in attendance for Impact training and have a direct influence on the development of player talent moving forward.

The deal will also include a friendly between the two sides, to take place at some point in 2017.

Fury FC will play their first season in the USL in 2017 after leaving the NASL where they played for two years. In 2015, the team was a finalist in the NASL Championship, falling to the New York Cosmos. Last season, new head coach Paul Dalglish took over the team and led them to a disappointing 10th place finish.

Previous to this, the Montreal Impact ran FC Montreal, a reserve team within the USL. The team was young and promising but couldn’t produce consistently on a competitive level. This partnership should take some of the brightest talents from that team and give them more experience alongside more veteran players.

Lastly, many have been quick to criticize the move on social media but the club continues to proclaim their independence. The Ottawa team will not become a reserve team but will instead seemingly operate more like a Minor League Baseball team, with an affiliation and loaned talent.