HIGHLIGHTS: Cavalry FC vs. FC Edmonton (July 30, 2022)
Cavalry FC clinched the 2022 Wildrose Cup after a 2-0 win over provincial rival FC Edmonton at Spruce Meadows.
The trophy, created in a partnership between supporters of FC Edmonton and Cavalry FC, is awarded annually to the winner of the season series between the two sides. Picking up their third CPL win against the Eddies in the four meetings they will have in the league this season, Cavalry continued their Al Classico dominance.
Cavalry has now defeated Edmonton 11 times in all competitions. Today’s victory came courtesy of first-half goals from Joe Mason and Karifa Yao.
After missing out midweek against Forge, José Escalante appeared eager to get back into the action, creating the match’s first chance but could not keep his shot on target inside the first six minutes.
Edmonton was quick to respond as their well-time press created several dangerous opportunities. The most notable came when Bradley Vliet, also perhaps a bit rusty after missing the Forge match, saw his pass picked off and Mamadi Camara sprung on a partial breakaway. Vliet’s Cavalry teammates, however, bailed out the fullback and the chance ultimately bounced harmlessly out for a corner.
The Eddies continued to put pressure on the hosts as the half reached its midway point. Gabriel Bitar nearly repeated history as he sent a long-range bullet towards the net of Marco Carducci, but this time the Cavalry keeper saved well.
Against the run of play, it was Cavalry who grabbed the opener. For the second time this week, Mason opened the scoring with a calm finish past Andreas Vaikla. But it was the play of fullback Roberto Alarcón that made the goal possible, as his brilliant marauding run drew several Edmonton players out of position before the Spanish fullback was able to poke the ball through to Mason.
FC Edmonton responded well, getting the ball into some good areas, but was unable to find a finished product. Cavalry made them pay for that lack of production in the 43rd minute, unsurprisingly from a set piece. Yao headed home Ben Fisk’s brilliant corner to give the hosts a 2-0 lead. This scoreline, a tad harsh on Edmonton, remained at the half.
The Cavs came out of the break looking to cause Edmonton further strife. They nearly did less than a minute into the half as substitute David Norman Jr.’s cross went through the hands of Vaikla and flashed dangerously across the front of goal.
Ali Musse was next to have a crack at goal in the 53rd minute but sent his strike from the top of the box well wide of the net. Escalante nearly made the highlight reel later in the half, but couldn’t quite connect on his flying volley attempt.
Then it was Mason in the 73rd minute who nearly added a third goal in two matches as he broke down the right flank. His shot, however, hit the goalpost behind Vaikla from a tight angle and no other Cavalry player could get to the rebound.
The hosts were generally able to see out the match without too many threats, although Edmonton substitute Azriel Gonzalez did threaten Carducci on a few occasions, including an 81st-minute strike that sailed just wide.
Cavalry nearly had the perfect footnote to the match as newcomer Mikaël Cantave found himself all alone in stoppage time but had his close-range strike saved brilliantly by Vaikla.
Having lost their last three matches, this was a much-needed win for Cavalry. They move up into second in the table, for the time being, just a single point behind league-leaders Pacific.
28′ — Joe Mason (Cavalry FC)
43′ — Karifa Yao (Cavalry FC)
38′ — Yellow: CJ Smith (FC Edmonton)
52′ — Yellow: Roberto Alarcón (Cavalry FC)
84′ — Yellow: Daan Klomp (Cavalry FC)
90′ + 5 — Yellow: David Norman Jr. (Cavalry FC)