Pacific FC plays first-ever Canadian Championship semi-finals at BMO Field

Pacific FC head coach Pa-Modou Kah on October 30, 2021

PREVIEW – Pacific FC (based in Langford, British Columbia) will play their first-ever Canadian Championship semi-finals game against Toronto FC. It will be a first for Pacific, but it will be a tough order. They will face a more in-form TFC side that just got a result on the road against a good MLS side.

Pacific FC plays their first-ever Canadian Championship semi-final against Toronto FC

Pacific FC

Yes, Pacific FC is first in the CPL standings. They also eliminated the Vancouver Whitecaps FC from the 2021 Canadian Championship. This, unfortunately, resulted in Marc Dos Santos losing his head coaching job with the Whitecaps. However, Langford has lost four of their last six games in the Canadian Premier League. They are also only one point ahead of both Forge FC (based in Hamilton) and Cavalry FC (based in Foothills County but representing Calgary). Hamilton has played three games less while Calgary has played one game less than Langford. This is what Pacific FC head coach Pa-Modou Kah according to Benedict Rhodes of CanPL:

“We were hoping for a better send-off in our last regular-season home game. We were not nearly good enough. We let ourselves down.  “We had momentum following Tuesday [5-1 victory over FC Edmonton] and just threw it away. Why? I don’t know.”

This is despite Pacific scoring the first goal of the game. It came from Terran Campbell, their joint-leader in goal-scoring. Unfortunately, they would give up two goals and lose at home against a solid York United FC side.

On the plus-side Pacific has been the best team offensively in the Canadian Premier League. They have scored 47 goals in the CPL. They also have a +14-goal difference. This is tied for first in goal differential with Hamilton. Their leading goal scorers are Terran Campbell and Alejandro Díaz Liceága with 10 goals. This is while Marco Bustos leads Pacific with six assists and is also second in the league. After Bustos, Campbell is second on the team with five assists.

Toronto FC

Toronto FC currently has the third-worst MLS record. They are also winless in their last five MLS games. However, in those last three games, TFC did get results in their last three games. This included Jordan Perruzza scoring a memorable goal on the road against Atlanta United FC. This allowed Toronto to come out from Georgia with a point in hand.

It was an encouraging result, especially when some of their best players were not in the Starting XI. This is because the Canadian Championship semi-finals game against Pacific FC is their priority. Toronto will not get the dubious honour of the Wooden Spoon. The Wooden Spoon is awarded to the worst team in MLS. However, Toronto also cannot make the 2021 MLS Cup playoffs. It was the first time for Toronto since the 2018 MLS season campaign.

Perruzza said this to his team in his post-game and what it meant to him and his family according to Toronto FC on October 30.

“I remember after that Leon game, I broke down in tears.” He also said: “I did not break down today, but a bigger day for me and my family.”

Jozy Altidore and Jonathan Osorio lead the team with four goals each. Yeferson Soteldo leads the team with 10 assists but is unlikely to play on Wednesday because of injury concerns. After Soteldo, Michael Bradley has five assists while Alejandro Pozuelo has four assists for TFC.

Pacific FC plays against Toronto FC at BMO Field predictions

This is what Perez said about Pozuelo, Altidore, and Omar Gonzalez not playing that many minutes against Atlanta according to Toronto FC:

“They need the rest. They need to play the game on Wednesday.”

Perez also said that the three players mentioned above were just coming from an injury. Nevertheless, it shows how serious Toronto is taking the Canadian Championship. After all, the Canadian Championship is the only trophy Toronto could win this year. It is important to note though that Toronto has a habit of giving up the first goal of the game. Pacific will look to take advantage of that in Wednesday’s game.

Prediction: Toronto FC 3, Pacific FC 1

For Langford, it is another opportunity to upset an MLS team in the Canadian Championship semi-finals. However, Pacific did lose to 2-1 to York United FC. The same team Toronto eliminated 4-0 at BMO Field. There will also be no twelfth man for Pacific this time around like against the Vancouver Whitecaps FC. This time they will go on the road against Toronto. TFC is taking this competition as the number one priority.

The game will be televised on OneSoccer and Telus. It will take place at 7:30 p.m. ET at BMO Field. The winner faces CF Montréal in the Canadian Championship Final. Montreal eliminated Forge FC in penalties on September 27.

Photo credit to Pacific FC by Sheldon Mack and Kelly Wallace on October 30, 2021.