HIGHLIGHTS: Pacific FC vs FC Edmonton (September 30, 2022)
Pacific FC put one foot in the playoffs on Friday night, as they beat FC Edmonton 1-0 at Starlight Stadium to climb up to second in the CPL table.
Because of that, the defending CPL champions can now clinch a playoff spot this weekend if Valour drops points against Cavalry FC on Sunday, with their magic number down to just one.
Yet, thanks to a good run of games from Pacific, who are undefeated in four games, they’ve now grabbed full control of their own playoff destiny again, after looking like they were on the ropes just a few weeks ago.
That much was clear to begin this game, in which Pacific came flying out of the gates in the opening minutes, as they looked to grab an early goal in their last home game of the regular season.
That approach would pay off for them, too, as they’d breach Edmonton’s net inside just one minute of action. After Manny Aparicio made a great run down the left side, he then found Marco Bustos with a great cross, one that Bustos nodded home with ease from in-close to make it 1-0.
Continuing their strong start, Pacific nearly made it two just a few minutes later, as Josh Heard whipped in a dangerous cross, one that fell to Djenairo Daniels in a good spot, but his attempt would be just kept out of the goal.
Eager to respond, Edmonton ramped up the pressure shortly after that. As a result, they nearly found a goal in the 15th minute, as Simon Triantafillou made great connection with a left-footed half-volley at the edge of the box, sending it just wide of the mark.
After that, however, the game would slow down for a bit, as both teams settled into the game. That meant the next chance for either team wouldn’t come until all the way in the 30th minute, when Pacific’s Josh Heard found some space in transition, doing well to rip a shot, one that sailed just over the goal.
Soon after, Mamadi Camara nearly had a good look inside of the box for Edmonton, but was taken down just before he could get a shot off, with no penalty being called on the play. Then, Edmonton’s Terique Mohammed made a nice run down the left-hand side, where he’d try to sneak a shot into the top corner at the near post, forcing a decent save out of Pacific’s Callum Irving with his attempt.
From there, though, both teams wouldn’t be able to find much else in terms of chances for the last 15 minutes of the first half, leaving them to reach halftime with Pacific still up 1-0.
On the other side of halftime, both teams would continue to struggle to find chances, however, as the game settled into a chess match. Because of that, the next chance didn’t come until the 60th minute, when Masta Kacher had a good look at goal from distance, sailing one well wide of the goal.
At the other end, Sean Young had a similar look from distance in the 62nd minute, doing well to turn and fire from 30 yards, although his volley would end up sailing well over the goal.
Continuing a good run of play, Pacific nearly made it two in the 73rd minute, as Aparicio this time found the feet of Bustos with a great left-footed cross, but Bustos’s attempt would sail well over the goal despite his proximity to the net.
Right after, Pacific’s Kunle Dada-Luke did well to find a wide-open Heard with a great cutback, yet despite being in a great position to score, he sent his shot right at Edmonton’s Andreas Vaikla in goal.
From there, however, that’d be all that both teams would be able to muster up in terms of chances, leaving Pacific to head home with all three points in their back pocket thanks to the 1-0 win.
1′ — Marco Bustos (Pacific FC)
13’— Yellow: Courtney Smith (FC Edmonton)
17’— Yellow: Simon Triantafillou (FC Edmonton)
72’— Yellow: Jamar Dixon (Pacific FC)
77’— Yellow: Josh Heard (Pacific FC)
90+4’— Yellow: Cale Loughrey (FC Edmonton)