2017 Canadian Championship Final

On Tuesday June 27, 2017 Toronto FC clinched their sixth Canadian Championship as they defeated the Montreal Impact 2-1 at home and finishing on a 3-2 aggregate. This final is the most attended Canadian Championship Final to date drawing an impressive 26, 539 on a Tuesday night in Toronto. The appointed referee for this match was Dave Gantar and both Montreal and Toronto sides were not too pleased with his calls or lack of calls throughout the match.

Toronto FC Coach Greg Vanney called up four Canadians to the line – up, three of which made the starting XI.

Toronto FC started off early with a few corner kicks but were quickly dissolved by the in-form Impact keeper Maxime Crepeau. Edwards, Giovinco, and Beitashour were all missed opportunities and stopped by Crepeau in minutes 6, 19, and 25. TFC’s best opportunity came in the 26th minute as Ricketts header was stopped by Crepeau. The few Impact supporters in section 204 were making their voices heard supporting their team and keeper at this point in the half. 10 minutes later their voices would be heard as 18 year-old Ballou Jean-Yves Tabla went through Michael Bradley, and Chris Mavinga and executed a well rounded top left hand goal giving Montreal the 1-0. Just before halftime Beitashour is taken down by Montreal full-back Kyle Fisher in a rugby-esque tackle. Fisher is given a yellow card and Beita remained in the game.

Toronto FC began the half with two substitutions as both Ricketts and Osorio would come off the pitch and Jozy Altidore and Marky Delgado would enter. During the 52nd minute Delgado would make his presence known as he finds Michael Bradley who then terrifically passes the ball across the left hand side the midfield to Giovinco’s terrific touch making it a tied game.

Both teams demonstrated their quality by picking up speed and momentum throughout the second half. In the 82nd minute Jozy Altidore’s header catches the cross bar. In the 88th minute BMO Field erupts with frustration as Impact defender Kyle Fisher was not shown his 2nd yellow of the match for slide tackling Giovinco. Despite being taken down in the penalty area, Toronto FC are not awarded a penalty kick and the game carried on. Tension continues to rise between both teams as just seconds later Patrice Bernier fouls Marky Delgado and both teams hover over referee Dave Gantar for the call. At this point both TFC and Impact squads were ready to throw fists at one another. Patrice Bernier is shown a red card in the final minute of the match and the Impact are down to ten men.

After all of that controversy no one expected what was still ahead in stoppage time. Victor Vasquez in the midfield passed to Raheem Edwards on the left wing, setting up Sebastian Giovinco in the middle for the finisher. Toronto FC are back-to-back Canadian Champions, hoisting the Voyageurs Cup for the 6th time in franchise history. Sebastian Giovinco takes home the George Gross Memorial Trophy as the Canadian Championship’s most valuable player.

After the match both players and coaches had plenty to say about the match.

If it came down to officiating, then they can take that as their out for tonight. But for me, it was two teams competing hard.

– Toronto FC Coach Greg Vanney

We win. I score. It’s good.

– Sebastian Giovinco

To win a championship in front of the fans, is a great experience.

– Raheem Edwards.

Toronto FC avoided a playoff match because the club also won last year’s domestic cup. Toronto FC will represent Canada during the 2017/18 CONCACAF Champions League and play in February 2018.

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Neil Fernandes

Neil Fernandes

Neil Fernandes has been a loyal supporter and season ticket holders for Toronto FC since it’s inaugural season. He has done several road trips to watch the team in Montreal and Columbus. He met his future wife, Teresa, at an away match in Columbus. TFC brings us all together; we are the most passionate fans in the MLS and come from from all walks of life. He is excited about covering the team in 2017 and looks forward to meeting more passionate fans. Although a big supporter of Toronto FC his favorite team is SL Benfica. He often contributes articles to Planet Benfica and has appeared on both Benfica Podcast and PTFOOTYPODCAST. He also supports the Canadian Men’s National Team and would like to see them qualify for the World Cup. Finally can we stop the Dichio song? Giovinco is better don’t you agree?

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