Forge FC will be gunning for a third straight Canadian Premier League title when they kick off their CPL playoff schedule on Sunday with a semi-final matchup with York United on their home turf at Tim Hortons Field. The Hamilton-based club enters the postseason as the top seed after closing out their campaign tied with Cavalry FC with 50 points, but holding a clear edge in wins and goal differential. Not to be outdone by the upcoming battle to win the MLS Cup, the CPL playoff schedule gets underway on Saturday, when second-place Cavalry welcomes third-place Pacific FC to Calgary’s ATCO Field on Saturday afternoon.
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|Canadian Premier League Playoffs Odds|
|Saturday November 20|
|Sunday November 21|
Cavalry FC vs Pacific FC
Saturday November 20, 3:00pm ET
Club records (W-D-L)
Cavalry FC: 14-8-6, 50 points (2nd place)
Pacific FC: 13-6-9, 45 points (3rd place)
Saturday’s contest marks a rematch between these two clubs, who last met in the quarter-finals of the Canadian Championship two months ago. Pacific FC came away with a 1-0 victory in that contest, but subsequently struggled badly down the stretch, posting wins in just three of 10 contests across all competitions, capped by a 1-0 road loss to Cavalry in their regular season finale two weeks ago.
Already in Canadian soccer withdrawal after last night?
— Canadian Premier League (@CPLsoccer) November 18, 2021
After regularly filling the net during a steady 8-2-1 midsummer run, Pacific’s offence faltered badly. The club has been limited to one or fewer goals in 10 of their past 13 overall contests, and have also struggled mightily on the road, where they have lost five straight while being outscored by a wide 8-3 margin. Further complicating matters for Pacific is their shaky record against Cavalry, whom they have failed to beat in four straight league dates on the road.
After a solid 3rd season, Pacific FC are getting set for the #CanPL playoffs this upcoming weekend
Ahead of then, we look back at their 2021 season, and the path they’ve taken to get to this postseason game
Check it out!
— Between The Sticks (@btsvancity) November 18, 2021
While Pacific search for answers, Cavalry FC aim to establish their first three-match win streak since August 2020 when they hit the pitch for Saturday’s contest. The club is coming off back-to-back clean sheet victories to close out their schedule, and assure themselves of second place on the CPL table. However, Cavalry have emerged as a consistent disappointment in postseason play after falling to defeat in three of their four previous playoff contests.
The Pick: Pacific FC
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Forge FC vs York United
Sunday November 21, 3:00pm ET
Tim Hortons Field
Club records (W-D-L)
Forge FC: 16-2-10, 50 points (1st place)
York United: 8-12-8, 36 points (4th place)
Forge FC will be aiming to snap a two-match season-ending losing streak when they begin the quest for a third straight CPL title on Saturday afternoon. The club failed to find the back of the net in back-to-back 1-0 losses to Edmonton and Cavalry, snapping a four-match win streak across all competitions. However, it is important to note that Forge had already locked up home field advantage in the semi-finals prior to entering their slide.
“We’ve played some big games in the past three seasons. We can handle the pressure, and have been showing that in the past; and Sunday is no different.”
Daniel Krutzen on Sunday’s Semi-Final match.
— Forge FC (@ForgeFCHamilton) November 17, 2021
Indeed, naysayers overlook the defending champions at their own peril. Forge FC have been particularly steady performers on their home pitch, averaging two goals per match during their current 4-1-2 run in league play, and have kept clean sheets in six of their past 14 home dates across all competitions.
PREVIEW: York United vs. Forge FC
— Forge FC (@ForgeFCHamilton) November 9, 2021
Things have not gone so well for York United, who make their first ever Canadian Premier League playoff appearance despite picking up just one win in their past eight matches. The club particularly struggled in their final two contests of the regular season, posting back-to-back losses to Forge FC over the course of just four days while being outscored by a 5-2 overall margin. They have also produced mixed results in league play on the road, going 4-4-3 over their past 11, and scoring multiple goals in five of those matches, and recorded clean sheet victories in to of their past three trips to Tim Hortons Field
The Pick: Forge FC