It was a long and treacherous road for Rob Gale’s Valour FC throughout June and July, when key player Michael Petrasso missed out on 7 consecutive league matches through injury. In those 7 matches, Valour picked up a measly 2 points, plummeting to the bottom of the Spring season table, and giving them a less-than-impressive start to the Fall season as well.
It became clear in the first few weeks of the season that Petrasso is Valour’s ‘X-Factor’. He assisted the clubs first ever goal, scored their first ever goal at home, assisted the only goal in a win against Edmonton, and caused problems for the opposition every time he stepped onto the pitch.
You would expect nothing less from a Canadian international, though.
The former Queen’s Park Rangers and Toronto FC youth product was by far the biggest signing made by Valour ahead of their inaugural Canadian Premier League season, and he became one of just a handful of players league-wide who had represented Canada at senior international level. Throughout his career, Petrasso has made a name for himself as a “chameleon”-type player, who is able to fill in at multiple positions across the pitch whenever required.
This trend has continued with Valour, as Petrasso has been used as a right-back, left-winger, right-winger, attacking midfielder, and a centre-forward in a front 2, throughout his minimal appearances for the team. Last season with Montreal Impact in the MLS, Petrasso was used solely as a right-back. His desire to play in more attacking roles led him to the CPL, to work with his former Canada U20 manager, Rob Gale.
Read more on the NSXI Network
The Voyageur's Cup semi-finals are complete, and so is the preliminary round of the 2019 CONCACAF League.
The field of potential Canadian Premier League teams to qualify for the CONCACAF Champions League halved this month, with only 1 side surviving an increasingly congested schedule to advance to their next round of competition.
Voyageur's Cup Update
Cavalry FC faced off against their 2nd MLS opponent, Montreal Impact, in the Voyageur's Cup semi-finals. Unlike the glacial melt caused by the Whitecaps' tire fire, the Impact have been on-and-off all season in the MLS, and promised a more difficult challenge.
The Red and Green Show is the unofficial official fan podcast which encompasses all things Cavalry FC. The podcast features guests who are connected with the CPL, upcoming opponents, as well as current Cavalry players.
It is hosted by Joey Cavilla of Lethbridge, Alberta. Joey is a huge Juventus & Italian national-team supporter with a degree in political science from the Univeristy of Lethbridge. A current high school football coach, future teacher, and recreational soccer player, Joey is conversationally fluent in Spanish and looks to bring a fresh jump to Cavalry's course.
The Quarterfinals have passed and only 4 clubs remain in the Canadian Championship. The battle for the Voyageurs Cup has lead to some fantastic ties, and with only more excitement to come, it can only get better.
Being in its inaugural year the Canadian Premier League (CanPL) clubs are getting their first taste of cup action, and their first swing at the Voyageurs Cup. With three CanPL clubs making it to the quarterfinals, they did not disappoint.
York9, Cavalry FC, and HFX Wanderers had the rest of the league at their backs. They put on a spectacle and proved their worth against MLS and USL clubs. But what does this mean for the CanPL? Is it the beginning of something special, or just a flash in the pan?
Read more on the NSXI Network.
The Premier Podcast covers all things #CanPL. Hosted by Michael Miller, this podcast covers all Canadian Premier League related activities, with occasional interviews with players and other personalities revolving around this new CONCACAF Division-1 League.
This week is a special French-language episode. Worry not, we will be back next week with our regular programming! Cette semaine, on y va d’une table ronde sur la CanPL et la Coupe Canadienne.
Host, music, graphics and editing : Michael Miller
Guests: Étienne Bouthillier, Justine Longpré & Julien Tardif
Location: Montréal, Québec, Canada
The Premier Podcast is a Kan Football Club podcast.
Also Available at:
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“Time to sit back and unwind”
Summer is finally here and League 1 Ontario is another five games down in the regular season with five left to go and the playoff picture is looking clearer despite some surprising results.
Alliance still topping the table
Alliance are miraculously still on top with the same record over this period as the first with four wins and a draw. Their strong, defence first approach is working wonders, with the team only conceding in two games all season. However, this does affect the other side of things, and whilst not having a bad goalscoring record, they do have the lowest goals scored per game ratio in the top 7 (1.80). Their top scorer is centre midfielder and captain, Nikola Stakic with 5 goals, 4 of which came from the penalty spot. Coincidentally, those 4 were all game-winners in 1-0 victories for the table toppers.
Whilst I think that Alliance are doing extremely well, a possible caveat to this is that out of the top 6 teams in the league, they have only played Aurora, who they tied 2-2. Four of their five remaining games are against 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 6th so this next period will be the real test as to whether they can compete with the big boys.
There is no way to sugar-coat it: Valour FC’ spring season was an utter disaster, and despite the team being a relatively young group of players that are still gelling together and finding their feet, there isn’t much excuse for the way things finished. In a league where most of the teams are on par and matches are extremely close, losing 6 games in a row is extremely alarming, and is a sign of major problems.
Luckily, Valour get a fresh start for the fall season, but we cannot act as if this team will somehow click together at some point if they keep doing what they’re doing – changes need to be made, and the coaching staff has a checklist of things they need to figure out prior to their opening match of the fall against Edmonton on the 17th.
View the list on the NSXI Network.
Forge’s Board is joined by AFC Curtis to discuss the results of the inaugural Spring Season of the Canadian Premier League. They evaluate the status of the league and picture what it may look like in years to come. The lads also discuss what to expect from the upcoming Fall Season and canvass the league for a potential dark horse. AFC Curtis also shines a light on the status of soccer in Manitoba and how it has been impacted since Valour FC was established.
Listen on the NSXI Network.
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It’s been a difficult spring season for Valour FC in the inaugural Canadian Premier League campaign – there’s no denying that. For a team many expected to be competitive for the CanPL title right off the bat due to impressive depth in the front 6 and a plethora of quality individual talent, nothing seems to be working for Rob Gale’s side at the moment.
One of those aforementioned quality individual talents is none other than former Montreal Impact player, Louis Beland-Goyette, who has been starting as the deepest midfielder all season long for the Winnipeg-based side – in a role known widely as the “regista”, or deep-lying playmaker.
While Beland-Goyette brings some impressive vision to the table, which partners quite nicely with his high-quality ball-retention and tempo-keeping abilities, he did tend to struggle off the ball in the early part of the season, especially in those crucial moments when Valour were transitioning into their defensive shape, and the opposition attacked with speed.
Read more on the NSXI Network.
Canada stormed out to a 2-0 lead before half time and looked a safe bet to advance to their first Gold Cup semi final since 2007. Haiti kept the faith in the second half and punished a lackluster Canadian side to keep their improbable run alive.
*** Important. Due to the wide range of times these games are shown at and unfortunate collisions with local professional teams you MUST check to ensure the bar is open and the game is on.
Victoria - Yates Taphouse
Vancouver - Library Square
Calgary - Home & Away
Edmonton - Urban Tavern
Saskatoon - Finn's Pub
Regina - The Lobby
Winnipeg - Nicolina's
Toronto - Duke of Gloucester.
Ottawa - Senate Tavern on Bank
Hamilton - End Zone Pub
Montreal - Frappe
Halifax - Niche Lounge
Waterloo - RIM Park
Kitchener - Budd Park
Not going to happen until 2024. That's why I didn't mention La Liga, because I knew about BEIN's deal with La Liga.
Mitter had a bit of a stinker against Forge and I think Le Bourhis did enough in his first two matches to show that he should at least be in the argument.
It is a little harsh to drop somebody after one poor match, if that is what happened, particularly the guy who has arguably been Valour's best CB, but perhaps Gale just wanted to get a look at another CB pairing. And I can't say why but the switch certainly brought out a much improved performance from Thomas. Le Bourhis is also the youngster and may therefore be presumed to have the most potential. Watch this space!