Edmontonians are stricken with World Cup fever and with the lack of local representation on the big stage, thousands of footy fans got their fix at Foote Field last night.

FC Edmonton, the city’s newest professional soccer club, took on the Montreal Impact of the North American Soccer League (NASL) in front of over 2,100 fans.

“It pumps me up, even for my own games,” said Sabrina Jhamandas, 18, a local player in Alberta’s major league. “It makes me excited to play.”

While Jhamandas was watching on the sidelines, FC Edmonton was off to a great start on the pitch, taking the lead in the 16th minute.

Tara Nay, Jhamandas’ friend and teammate, said she will continue to come out and support the home side because she knows a few of the FC Edmonton players.

“It makes it more fun to watch,” she said. “Since the Drillers left, it’s nice to have something back in Edmonton.”

And with several high-profile matchups scheduled for this inaugural exhibition season, Nay said she expects to see more fans in the stands.

“This has been good so far,” she said. “I really hope it continues because it’s fun to watch and it’s exciting.”

In the end, FC Edmonton won its first game 3-0. The team’s next game is against Chilean giants Colo-Colo on Sunday at Commonwealth.

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