HIGHLIGHTS: Pacific FC 0-0 Forge FC — CPL Match #18

Pacific FC and Forge FC played to a 0-0 draw at Starlight Stadium on Saturday afternoon, as neither side was able to find a breakthrough in a top-of-the-table clash.

Andrei Tîrcoveanu tried to test Forge debutant goalkeeper Jassem Koleilat early, volleying a shot from distance, but it went wide of the mark. That effort from the Romanian attacker came about a minute after he had another left footed attempt blocked outside the penalty area. After scoring midweek in the Canadian Championship, Forge attacker David Choinière tried to pick out the top right corner with a hard shot from close range in the tenth minute, but his effort took a deflection off Emil Gazdov and skimmed the crossbar on its way out of bounds.

The visitors were dictating play for much of the first half, and challenged the Pacific backline on several occasions, but were struggling to hit the target. Former Tridents midfielder Alessandro Hojabrpour missed wide with a weak attempt in the 20th minute, before Tristan Borges missed the target twice on either side of a blocked Noah Jensen shot.

Gazdov was tested by Choinière again in the 34th minute with a hard, low shot from the edge of the penalty area, but the 20-year-old goalkeeper was able to get down for an easy stop for one of his three saves in the first half.

His counterpart Koleilat was a spectator for most of the opening 45 minutes, but was called into action late in the half as Pacific found a couple of opportunities in quick succession. Koleilat got down to make a diving stop on Dario Zanatta, before pushing a shot from the ensuing corner over the bar.

Alexander Achinioti-Jönsson bailed his team out in the 39th minute, clearing a low shot from Adonijah Reid off the line that beat Koleilat after the Forge goalkeeper came off his line to try and make a save.

That was the closest anyone came in the first half, before Stewie the Starfish entertained the crowd at Pacific’s Mother’s Day match.

Just after the hour mark, Kwasi Poku forced Gazdov to make an excellent diving stop, as the Forge attacker attempted to pick out the top right corner with a curling shot off the outside of his foot. Moments later at the other end of the pitch, Pacific thought they deserved a penalty when the ball struck Malcolm Duncan’s arm in the box, but referee Scott Bowman didn’t agree with the shouts.

Koleilat stood his ground again in the 74th minute, catching a header from Reon Moore from a corner kick. Thomas Meilleur-Giguère nearly steered the ball home on another corner a few minutes later, but his header was blocked by Daniel Parra.

Kyle Bekker nearly won the match for Forge in the 90th minute, firing a shot inches wide of the right post with his left foot. Bekker, who came off the bench about 15 minutes earlier, struck the ball well, but just missed his intended target, which was the bottom right corner of Gazdov’s net.

Reon Moore was sent off in stoppage time, after hitting Parra as the Forge player was trying to get the ball from the Pacific striker to take a free kick quickly. Moore was given a straight red for the action, giving the visitors about three minutes to play up a man, but the Hammers were unable to take advantage.

With the scoreless draw, Pacific move to the top of the Canadian Premier League table, and extend their record clean sheet streak to five matches to start the year. Forge remain unbeaten as well, moving to 3-1-0 on the year, good for ten points and third place in the table — with a game in hand on the teams above them.



Pacific FC: Gazdov; Quintana (Dada-Luke 63′), Meilleur-Giguère, Ndom; Young (Lamothe 71′), Bahous (Moore 46′), Toussaint (Yeates 58′), Lajeunesse; Tîrcoveanu, Zanatta (Heard 58′), Reid

Forge FC: Koleilat; Duncan, Achinioti-Jönsson, Metusala, Parra; Hojabrpour, Jensen (Samuel 88′); Choinière (Badibanga 75′), Borges (Bekker 75′), Poku (Tavernier 86′); Hamilton (Kone 86′)




46′ — Yellow: Juan Quintana (Pacific FC)
70′ — Yellow: Eric Lajeunesse (Pacific FC)
88′ — Yellow: Kevaughn Tavernier (Forge FC)
93′ — Red: Reon Moore (Pacific FC)