Forge FC and Cavalry FC battle to 1:1 draw in first leg of Qualifying Round 2

A dramatic ending resulted in a 1:1 draw between Forge FC and Cavalry FC in the first leg of the Canadian Championship Qualifying Round 2 at […]

A dramatic ending resulted in a 1:1 draw between Forge FC and Cavalry FC in the first leg of the Canadian Championship Qualifying Round 2 at Tim Hortons field in Hamilton, ON on 4 June. The top two Canadian Premier League teams will meet again on 11 June for the return leg at Spruce Meadows in Calgary. Cavalry FC qualified to meet Forge FC in Qualifying Round 2 with a decisive 4:1 aggregate victory over Pacific FC in May.

Cavarly FC keeper Nikolas Giantsopoulos was forced to make a strong early save in the first minute of the match. Cavalry’s first chance of the match came in the 10’ when Nico Pasquotti put in a low cross that rolled right across the face of goal but Dominique Malonga couldn’t get a touch to put the away team in the lead. Two minutes later, it was Forge FC again forcing the Cavalry keeper into a quality save, as David Choinière found fullback Giuliano Frano whose shot was parried by Giantsopoulos over the bar (12’).

Cavalry had another good look at goal in the 31’ but Sergio Camargo’s shot was off target after the cross from Malonga found him in space right in from of the Forge FC net. The sides were knotted 0:0 at the end of the first half.

The home side took the lead early in the second half when Choinière himself in the Cavalry penalty area all alone. Cavalry defender Dominick Zator was able to slide in and prevent him from getting a shot away but the Forge FC attacker maintained possession and was able to slide a pass to Emery Welshman. With the whole net gaping in front of him, Welshman made no mistake, hammering the shot high into the back of the net to give his team the 1:0 lead (49’). It was the first time that Cavalry FC trailed in a match all season.

Just minutes after entering the match, Marcel Zajac hit the crossbar with a wide-open header from an in-swinging corner, nearly doubling the home sides lead (64’). Cavalry’s best chance of the second half came from José Escalante who hit a free kick from distance that the Forge FC keeper Quillan Roberts dove to save and had to make a second effort stop to prevent the visitors from equalizing the match (69’). Zajac had another chance to double the lead in the 71’ when he beat a tackle to attack the Cavalry penalty area all alone, but his first shot is straight at the Cavalry keeper who did well to make the save and the follow up shot went wide.

At the death, Cavalry FC were awarded a penalty when the Forge FC keeper barrelled into Malonga who was in on goal. Alexander Achinioti Jönsson took over as the home team’s keeper with Roberts shown a red card and no substitutions remaining for Forge. Achinioti Jönsson dove the correct way but couldn’t get his hand on the ball as Malonga’s well-taken penalty tied the match 1:1 (90+6’).

Forge FC’s Starting XI was backstopped by Canadian keeper Quillan Roberts. The backline was formed by Bertrand Owundi Eko’o and Canadian Dominic Samuel in the centre with Daniël Krutzen and Canadian Giuliano Frano as fullbacks. The Forge FC midfield included Alexander Achinioti Jönsson, Elimane Cissé and Canadian Kyle Bekker who captained the side. Canadian forwards Tristan Borges and David Choinière combined with Emery Welshman to round out the attack.

Forge FC coach Peter Reynders made the first change of the night with Canadian Marcel Zajac replacing Choinière (62’). Borges was replaced by Canadian Chris Nanco (82’) and Welshman made way for Canadian Kwame Awuah (92’).

Cavalry FC’s starting XI featured Canadian goalkeeper Nikolas Giantsopoulos behind the defensive line of Nathan Mavila and Canadians Dominick Zator, Dean Northover, and captain Mason Trafford. Julian Büscher, Elijah Adekugbe and Canadian Sergio Camargo combined to form the midfield for the away side while the frontline was made up by Dominique Malonga and Canadians Nico Pasquotti and Carlos Patino.

Cavalry coach Tommy Wheeldon Jr. made his first substitution of the match in the 65’ with Camargo making way for José Escalante. Patino made way for Jordan Brown (76’).

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