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CSL Playoffs Semis


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Result of the Saturday October 20th, 2007 CSL game between St Catharines Roma Wolves and Toronto Croatia played at Esther Shiner Stadium in North York at 4:00pm. This was the first semi-final match of the weekend for the CSL championships.

11 min…Croatia Hayden Fitzwilliams GOAL…Croatia Tihomir Maletic rolls centering cross from 18 yards on right and Fitzwilliams pokes in 12 yard roller beyond goalie Claudio Perri.

28 min…Croatia Tihomir Maletic GOAL…Maletic takes 12 yard kick up middle that’s off goalie and a defender trying to scoop ball out with foot. I thought the goal was in right there because the referee’s assistant held up his flag and ran back to the center line but play carried on until referee Dave Barry realized the signal was for a goal.

30 min…Wolves RED card…midfielder Nick Aragona is ejected for complaining about the goal. He was on the bench so the Wolves didn’t have to play short.

41 min…Wolves Dan Gallacher GOAL…Gallacher blast from 10 yards on right to open short right of net. Wolves Arnie Magnotta had passed after goalie had made flying save on left but gave up rebound.

44 min…Croatia Tihomir Maletic GOAL…Croatia Hayden Fitzwilliams on left wing after taking pass on left sideline (with hand?) runs down sideline and cross finds Maletic unmarked and he bounces 15 yard shot over diving goalie.

59 min…Wolves Joe Del Priore’s long throw-in from left hits a defender’s arm in the box and the referee signals a Penalty kick.

60 min…Wolves Arnie Magnotta GOAL…Magnotta’s Penalty kick is to low left of net as goalie Marko Zuljak dives to right. Zuljak then earns a Yellow card for booting the ball away after the goal.

Final Score:…..St Catharines Roma Wolves……….2…………..Toronto Croatia……….3……….

Attendance was about 175 and that included the two teams of ball boys and parents who played a halftime game. Some Roma fans (well Roma is what they called out to encourage their team) made the trip to cheer them on.

Key strategy because of the strong gusty wind from the west was for the Wolves to win the coin toss and kick into the wind and stare into the bright sun in the west in the first half and try to hold on until they got the advantage in the second half. It almost worked because Croatia was hanging on for the entire second half. The referee added a not too generous six minutes of injury time. I had driven from downtown Toronto after watching MLS Toronto FC’s final game of the season (barely made it in time for this game) after seeing FC’s goalie get chipped over from 60 yards because he was off his line on a north wind aided kick.

Croatia posed for a team picture after the game and I noticed their #1 wasn’t long serving goalie George Azcurra but Marko Zuljak who answered that he was aged 18. Regular back up keeper Roy Blanche wasn’t on the roster either. Zuljak didn’t buckle under the pressure but was greatly aided by a tight defense which in the second half was made up of Mario Kulis, Domagoj Sain, Robert Fran, and Halburto Harris.

With taking notes I missed the handball that set up the rush on Croatia’s final goal and a probable slap in the face by Croatia’s Hugo Herrera on a Wolves player at the center line during injury time. I felt like the sitcom character Sgt Schultz.

These teams had met twice before during the season and Croatia had won their road game 1-0 and then their home game 2-1. Wolves only lost four games all year so there’s half them right there. Croatia only lost one game all year and conceded only 16 goals in the 22 game regular season (best in the league).

Rocket Robin


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According to a live score website, Trois-Rivières lost 2-1 against Serbian WE in the second semi-final

The winners score twice in the first half of the first half and TR hoped in the last ten minutes after reducing the score, but couldn't force extra time.

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Result of the Sunday October 21, 2007 CSL game between Serbian White Eagles and Trois-Rivieres Attak played at Esther Shiner Stadium in North York at 5:00pm.

This was the second semi-final of the CSL Championship playoffs.

6 min…White Eagles Zoran Kokot GOAL…Kokot gets ball on left and turns around and fires 20 yard roller into right corner of net beyond goalie.

25 min…White Eagles Dragorad Milicevic GOAL…Milicevic on left blasts 25 yard shot into top right corner of net over flying goalie. Milicevic then draws a Yellow card for excess celebrating.

46 min (1st half injury time)…SWE Gabriel Pop gets through ball on left and as he’s rounding goalie, goalie Jon Paul Piques sprawls and trips him. Referee Isaac Raymond calls for a Penalty kick.

47 min…(1st half injury time)…SWE Sasa Viciknez blasts Penalty kick well over top left corner of net.

84 min…Attak Nicolas Lesage GOAL…Attak Sita Taty Matondo cross from right into crowd has Lesage knock 3 yarder loose ball into center of net leaving goalie Djordje Radan no chance.

94 min… (2nd half injury time)…Attak Red card…Darko Kolic draws Red card for foul on SWE player at SWE 25 yard line.

Final Score:…….Serbian White Eagles………2…………Trois-Rivieres Attak…………..1………

Attendance was about 500 on this warm late afternoon. There was a bright sun in the west for the first half but no wind (unlike yesterday) that played a factor in today’s game.

White Eagles had a good chance of putting this game away in the first half but the missed Penalty kick gave the Attak some momentum and they played much better in the second half. Goalie Djordje Radan had to be great with a few flying saves and leaps to take balls off the heads of Attak forwards in the box before they could play them. 50 minute sub Sita Taty Matondo sent in the best crosses. Attak’s Olivier Brett had a great chance to equalize at 86 minutes when his 20 yard midair blast was just over the net. It looked a lot like MLS Toronto FC Danny Dichio’s injury time goal yesterday afternoon. Radan’s best save was at 33 minutes when Attak’s Boubacar Coulibaly sent a 22 yard shot up the middle that he palmed over the net as he fell back.

Montreal Impact’s head coach Nick De Santos and assistant Peter Pinnizotto were watching the game. The Attak is the farm team of the Impact.

This set’s up a dream (or nightmare) final between Serbian White Eagles and Toronto Croatia. The game will definitely not be played here at Esther Shiner Stadium for crowd control reasons. The league will announce tomorrow where and when the game will be held. The expected place is Centennial Stadium (although the City of Toronto has closed the field for the season) with makeshift stands placed on the east side of the field opposite the concrete west side stands to keep the supporters apart. Because of the organizing involved—police presence required and to maximize ticket sales, the game may be held in two weeks with the already scheduled banquet awards dinner held later in the day.

Rocket Robin


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quote:Originally posted by Ivan

Why not play the final at BMO Field?

I would assume rental costs (and security, staff) are far too high for a game of this scale.

Plus, these two teams haven't exactly got the best reputation when they play each other.

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