2020 CPL regular season (The Island Games) — Match #33 Cavalry FC vs. Forge FC September 15, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. ET/2:00 p.m. AT
UPEI Artificial Turf Field in Charlottetown, PEI Watch Live: OneSoccer.ca
The stakes are high for both Cavalry FC and Forge FC in Tuesday’s final matchday of the second round at The Island Games.
While Forge is on the cusp of qualifying for its second consecutive CPL Final, the Cavs are on the brink of elimination at The Island Games and face a must-win situation on Tuesday afternoon.
Forge tops the table with four points based on goal difference (ahead of HFX Wanderers FC, also on four points) and is riding a four-game unbeaten run, which includes a 2-0 win over Pacific FC on the weekend.
Cavalry sits third in the table with three points, and is fresh off a 2-1 loss to HFX.
Cavalry would clinch a berth in the 2020 CPL Finals with a win. A loss or draw would see them eliminated from contention.
Forge can clinch a spot in the finals with a win or draw. They can also advance with a loss, provided that HFX Wanderers FC lose to Pacific FC on Tuesday night.
Left side or right side for Grant: Forge coach Bobby Smyrniotis deployed right fullback Johnny Grant on the left wing and ahead of standout Kwame Awuah against Pacific on the weekend. Grant’s marauding attacking nature led to Forge’s breakthrough in the 35th minute when he was hauled down in the box, and Daniel Krutzen converted the penalty. “We knew that Johnny was going to get in behind and get to create or get taken down in the penalty box,” Smyrniotis said. Will he use Grant on the left side vs. Cavalry?
Absences for Cavalry: Defender Jonathan Wheeldon’s expulsion during the HFX game on Saturday means he’ll be suspended for this contest. Sergio Camargo, Nik Ledgerwood, and Nico Pasquotti missed out against HFX through injury, and the club is already missing Oliver Minatel (who is out for the rest of the season). If coach Tommy Wheeldon Jr. can’t get some healthy bodies back, he’ll have to rejig his lineup and play some guys out of position against Forge.
Triston Henry keeping it locked down: The Forge goalkeeper has three clean sheets at The Island Games, tied with Cavalry’s Marco Carducci for the most in the CPL. He’s also faced 18 shots, the fifth-most among all goalkeepers in PEI. Henry has looked solid in his eight appearances thus far, and it’ll be interesting to see how he does in his 1-on-1 battle with Carducci on Tuesday.
“Sometimes the toughest thing is to come back after a championship season and keep that level high and make sure that you have the hunger. Our role for our community, our fans, our club, and the culture of our club is to put our best foot forward in trying to build something that’s very special for the future.” – Forge coach Bobby Smyrniotis, after the Pacific match
A controversial penalty call deep into injury time (replays appeared to show that a shot by Mohamed Farsi hit Forge’s Dominic Samuel in the ribs) gave the team from Calgary a lifeline, and Cavalry’s Nathan Mavila converted from the penalty spot.