Rocket Robin Report: 2017 Canadian Championship Final

Editor’s Note: As Robin’s articles are originally published elsewhere and merely reprinted here, they are presented unedited. They are merely reformatted to improve the way they display on our site. NSXI takes no ownership or responsibility for the content, spelling, grammar or the opinions expressed below.

Result and details of the Tuesday June 27, 2017 Canadian Championship Final between Toronto FC and Montreal Impact played at BMO Field at 7:30pm.

35 min…Impact Ballou Jean-Yves Tabla GOAL…Imp Blerim Dzemali has his rush from 55 yards up middle stopped by slide of TFC Chris Mavinga at TFC 33 yard line. The ball spins over Mavinga and now to Dzemali at 30 yard line and he taps pass to charging Tabla. Tabla blasts shot up middle from 20 yards between two defenders and into top left corner of net over flying goalie Clint Irwin.

53 min…TFC Sebastian Giovinco GOAL…TFC Marky Delgado intercepts pass attempt on center line and chips pass to left for TFC Michael Bradley at 40 yard line. Bradley sends long cross to Giovinco at 12 yards on right and he chests ball down and runs towards center of box and cuts low shot between two defenders and into right corner of net past diving goalie Maxime Crepeau.

88 min…Impact RED card…Patrice Bernier earns it for stealing ball off TFC Sebastian Giovinco on edge of Imp box and he starts weaving through challengers like TFC Michael Bradley who he turns to elude at 28 yards in middle and kicks ankle of TFC Marky Delgado injuring him although Bernier had one foot standing on the ball. A group of TFC players swarms the referee and Dave Gantar gives out a delayed Red card.

94 min (2nd half)…TFC Sebastian Giovinco GOAL…TFC Michael Bradley checks Imp Ballou Jean-Yvews Tabla off ball at Imp 40 yard line and Giovinco recovers and sidesteps sliding tackle at 35 yards and taps pass as Tabla grabs his shoulder but he bounces back up. TFC Victor Vazquez recovers ball at 35 yards on left and rolls it forward to charging TFC Raheem Edwards. Edwards at 18 yards on far left rolls centering pass through sliding defender’s legs and Giovinco at 7 yards is even with left post kicks ball forward to left side of net.

After the goal, TFC players jump over the sign boards to celebrate with fans in the south end. Edwards is the first one over so earns a Yellow card for time-wasting.

96 min…Ball put back in play at center and whistle is blown to end the game.

Final Score:…..Toronto FC…… 2 ……Montreal Impact…… 1 ….. 

(Toronto FC wins two game series 3-2 on aggregate)

The MVP of the tourney is TFC Sebastian Giovinco with the goal scoring lead of three goals. He only played three of the four TFC games and came in as halftime sub in the home game against Ottawa (and scored their fourth goal) and subbed in at 62 minutes in their away game in Montreal. Efficient! He was given a crystal vase, the George Gross Trophy—named for the late sportswriter.

Next was a medal presentation to TFC players and Michael Bradley accepted the Voyageurs Cup. I leaned over while we were waiting and told a fan in the row in front of me how I was one of the fans who paid to buy the trophy in 2001. The players went to the south end with their medals and the trophy and Giovinco led the Icelandic chant on the drum those fans provided. The players then continued and made a complete circle of the field with midfielder Chris Mavinga so we could applaud them too. Nice gesture even though half my row had headed for the exits.

Bet Mavinga never thought he’d be doing this when he was a boy in France. The lights went down and a fireworks display as promised for Canada Day this weekend was put on. How long did it last? Enough time to get through ‘Tom Sawyer’ by Rush and ‘Summer of ’69’ by Bryan Adams!

Now I left and stood for the entire streetcar route as expected but most of the subway route too as it was clogged with Blue Jays fans as their game had just ended (seems like this or Leaf hockey games back in the spring happens 50% of the time).

The TFC win saves me about $100 by NOT having to play a rather awkward play-in game on August 9th between the 2016 vs 2017 Canadian Championship winners for entry into the CONCACAF club championships next spring. I can spend that day with my $10 ticket to the TFC II vs Charlotte Independence game at the Ontario Soccer Centre.

From our seats in the East side, we don’t get to see the active sign boards like you do on television so I didn’t know Twitter had exploded with comments about the CSA (who host this competition) dropping ads for the Canadian Premier League during the game—something the TFC corporate owners would never approve during an MLS game. TFC made halftime subs taking out two of their three Canadians Tosaint Ricketts and Jonathan Osorio for Americans Jozy Altidore and Marky Delgado. I’m sure if this tourney wasn’t mandated in insisting on a minimum of three starting Canadians, TFC wouldn’t have started them at all. Two Canadians out before the second half starts happened in the home semi-final against Ottawa as well. That’s why we need that new Canadian league!

Bradley and Altidore were given extensions by the coach of the US National team to NOT play in the first round of the Gold Cup so they could play tonight and TFC’s next two league games. Justin Morrow (midfielder) was chosen to play for the US in the first round so he’s left already. The three players named to the Canadian team for the Gold Cup, Jonathan Osorio, Raheem Edwards and Tosaint Ricketts were allowed to stay with TFC until tomorrow.

I thought TFC started slowly and had a lot of broken plays. Even Giovinco kicked a freekick into a player wall. Once the Impact scored now TFC were in trouble as they would need to eventually score two goals to win. Impact defenders Laurent Ciman and Hassoun Camara had to make some big blocks and key clearances to prevent TFC break-ins. TFC had more chances but Impact got by with counterattacks.

I think the Red card was a make-up call for not awarding a Penalty kick to TFC when Giovinco was upended two minutes earlier.

Attendance of 26539 for a midweek game was pretty good.

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Robin Glover

Robin Glover

Robin has been writing about soccer in the Toronto area for message boards and his own website since the early 1990s in the days of 2400 baud modems to USENET sites. In the 2014 season he attended 76 games in various leagues that played in the GTA area. Follow Robin on Twitter and on his website

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