Canadian Premier League — Match #35
Pacific FC vs. Cavalry FC
July 1, 2019 — Westhills Stadium (3 p.m. PT, 6 p.m. ET)
Watch Live: OneSoccer.ca
The Spring season winners will take their victory lap on Vancouver Island for Canada Day, as Cavalry FC rolls into Westhills Stadium to take on Pacific FC and put a cap on the opening stanza of the CPL’s inaugural campaign.
After securing a berth in the 2019 CPL Championship on Wednesday by defeating York9 FC 2-0, the Cavs are flying high heading into this match; The team had a brief scare in losing to Forge FC last weekend (the only blemish on Cavalry’s record), but their stranglehold on the league’s pole position has never really wavered. They’re hoping to win an astonishing ninth game out of 10 for the Spring season and keep their momentum up entering the Fall.
Pacific, on the other hand, is hoping to shake off their most recent loss, which came last weekend at the hands of FC Edmonton. They edged Valour FC just a few days prior to shake off a six-game winless streak, so Michael Silberbauer will hope to find that spark again. The Spring season has been tough for Pacific, who sit in a tie for last with a 2-2-5 record.
Although these sides haven’t yet clashed in the CPL, they’re not unfamiliar with each other. The clubs met in the Canadian Championship in May, as Cavalry advanced 4-1 on aggregate.
Following this Spring season closer, Cavalry and Pacific will butt heads again to kick off the Fall. At Westhills Stadium again, the two clubs will play each other on Saturday, July 6 (6:00 p.m. ET, 3:00 p.m. PT, on OneSoccer).
KEYS TO THE MATCH
- No days off: Although Cavalry has already wrapped up the Spring title, Tommy Wheeldon Jr. will certainly not want them to rest on their laurels. He could certainly rotate his squad a little bit after the gauntlet that the last month has been, but the Cavs should be wary of this as a potential trap game. They need to stay in form, especially with a massive Canadian Championship tie just around the corner, so there’s no time to get complacent.
- Tighten up: The biggest issue with Pacific in the Spring has been their leaky backline. They’ve conceded the most goals in the league with 14, and recently Silberbauer has been forced to experiment with his formation due to injury. Midfielder Matthew Baldisimo even took a crack at centre-back against FC Edmonton, which went poorly as PFC conceded three goals to end the Eddies’ goal drought. Pacific’s back four desperately needs to start clicking, and fast.
- Ball on the ground: Cavalry is at its most dominant when pressing high and carving open defences with quick ground passes. Their usual trio of Sergio Camargo, Dominique Malonga, and Nico Pasquotti has been absolutely lethal recently, especially when receiving service from deeper in midfield — which Elijah Adekugbe and Julian Büscher can provide. The best way for Pacific to challenge the Cavs would be to find a method of cutting out those ground passes and stretch the game out with long balls and skill out wide (paging Ben Fisk!).
Pacific FC: Mark Village; Blake Smith, Ryan McCurdy, Émile Legault, Kadin Chung; Victor Blasco, Noah Verhoeven, Alexander Gonzalez, Matthew Baldisimo, Ben Fisk; Terran Campbell
Cavalry FC: Marco Carducci; Dean Northover, Dominick Zator, Jonathan Wheeldon, Nathan Mavila; Jose Escalante, Elijah Adekugbe, Julian Büscher, Nico Pasquotti; Sergio Camargo, Dominique Malonga
HEAD TO HEAD
May 15 – Pacific FC 0-2 Cavalry FC (CanChamp)
May 22 – Cavalry FC 2-1 Pacific FC (CanChamp)
Sergio Camargo – 3 goals (Cavalry FC)
Terran Campbell, Victor Blasco – 2 goals (Pacific FC)
Hendrik Starostzik (Pacific FC) – Out
Marcel De Jong (Pacific FC) – Out
Lukas MacNaughton (Pacific FC) – Questionable
Marcus Haber (Pacific FC) – Questionable
Chris Serban (Cavalry FC) – Out (Knee)
Nik Ledgerwood (Cavalry FC) – Questionable
(Players are suspended for one match 14 days after accumulating a 4th Yellow Card)
Matthew Baldisimo (Pacific FC) – 3
Elijah Adekugbe (Cavalry FC) – 3
Jonathan Wheeldon (Cavalry FC) – 3
Joel Waterman (Cavalry FC) – 3
Referee: Juan Marquez
ARs: Jasmain Parr & Evan Fryer
4th Official: Mo Mohseni
Download the Centre Circle app to play predictor ahead of each match.
Q: Which team will have more total passes?
A: Usually home teams tend to dictate possession and end up putting together more passes. However for a club such as Cavalry who tends to dictate possession even when playing on the road, they may be the one outlier in the Canada Day matches.
Q: Which team will make the last sub?
A: The easiest way to look at this is which club will save a substitution to kill the clock off, meaning which team will be ahead late in the match? Clubs higher up in the standings like Halifax and Cavalry are safe bets, the only 50/50 opportunity may be for the Valour and York9 match where both clubs are currently facing problems scoring roadblocks.
Q: Which team will have more Canadians play this match?
A: So far we’ve seen clubs with younger rosters give more playing time to Canadian players. It would then be wise to consider Pacific and Valour as options here. Valour manager Rob Gale has specifically spoken about getting younger players playing time as the Spring Competition comes to a close, a huge hint for things to come.