There’s a new leader in the CPL’s Fall competition, as Forge FC took over first place with a 3-1 away win on Saturday against Valour FC. With 13 points now, they leapfrogged Cavalry FC and FC Edmonton, both of whom dropped points in Friday’s Al Classico draw.
After a cagey period to start the match, it was Forge who struck first at IG Field. Anthony Novak, with a tremendous burst of speed, made a long solo run from the right flank and finished a low shot with pinpoint accuracy from a difficult wide angle.
Forge had a chance to increase their lead before halftime, with a handball by Jose Galan sending David Choinère to the penalty spot. For the second straight week, though, Valour goalkeeper Mathias Janssens got his hands to the shot and kept it out.
The pace picked up a little in the second half, especially late as Valour tried to press for an equalizer. It was Forge, however, who had more in the tank offensively, as Novak muscled his way through the penalty area in the 72nd minute to score his second of the day.
His goal was the beginning of a frenzied stretch of action at both sides; Valour won themselves a penalty in the 75th minute, and Michael Petrasso buried it, only for Forge to respond immediately with a goal from Chris Nanco. The latter turned out to be the dagger, as Valour was unable to get back into the match after coming within one and conceding seconds after.
Valour will be right back at it at home, as they welcome FC Edmonton to IG Field this coming Monday (8:00 p.m. ET, 7:00 p.m. CT, on OneSoccer). Forge is back on the pitch this Thursday, August 22, as they resume their CONCACAF League campaign with a home leg against Olimpia, before returning to CPL action next Sunday, August 25 at home against Cavalry FC (3:30 p.m. ET, on OneSoccer).
30′ – Anthony Novak (Forge FC)
73′ – Anthony Novak (Forge FC)
76′ – Michael Petrasso (Valour FC)
77′ – Chris Nanco (Forge FC)
51′ Yellow – Giuliano Frano (Forge FC)
75′ Yellow – Jonathan Grant (Forge FC)
Three Key Performers
Anthony Novak (Forge FC)
Novak caused huge problems for Valour’s backline, especially when drifting out to the right flank. With two excellent goals and an assist, he showed tremendous confidence in leading Forge’s attack all afternoon.
Michael Petrasso (Valour FC)
It was a frustrating afternoon offensively for Valour, but it wasn’t for lack of effort from Petrasso. He had a 91.7% passing accuracy in the attacking half, with four key passes and four shots of his own (including a successful penalty kick).
Elimane Cissé (Forge FC)
Valour wasn’t able to get anything going through the middle of the pitch, in large part due to Cissé’s presence. He made three tackles himself, and he distributed the ball away from dangerous areas with 100% accuracy.