May 20, 2024
  • May 20, 2024
Forge FC Alexander Achinioti Jonsson

Pacific 0-0 Forge: Tridents Still Cannot Be Broken Down

By on May 12, 2024 0 495 Views

For just the third time in Canadian Premier League history, a match between Pacific and Forge ended with no winner. It is also the first time that a game between these two sides ended without a goal, as the sides played to a 0-0 draw on Vancouver Island.

Both teams’ last matches came in the Canadian Championship. Forge drew 1-1 against CF Montreal on Tuesday, while Pacific played to a goalless stalemate at Atletico Ottawa the next day. As for their last CPL game, Pacific topped York United 2-0 at home last weekend. For Forge, who was playing their first out-of-province game of the season, their last league outing came two weeks ago when they defeated Valour 2-1 in Hamilton.

Going into this game, Pacific coach James Merriman opted to make five changes from their midweek clash. Four of the five adjustments came in the midfield and attack as the Tridents went for a fresher look.

As for Bobby Smyrniotis’ Forge, there were three changes from their Canadian Championship game. The most notable one came in goal, as Jassem Koleilat made his first start for the club.

The best chance of the first half came in the 10th minute, as Malcolm Duncan played in David Choiniere. The latter’s shot was well saved by Emil Gazdov, as the Pacific keeper tipped Choiniere’s shot onto the bar and out for a corner.

Overall, the first half saw little regarding serious goalmouth action. It was more of a chess match, as Forge tried to break down this resilient Pacific backline. The hosts would have their best chance in the 37th minute. Aly Ndom did well to beat a man before finding Dario Zanatta, whose low shot was saved by Koleilat.

While there were a dozen shots in the first half, the two mentioned were the only really big opportunities for Pacific and Forge. Just from watching the match, it is easy to see why the Tridents are yet to concede a goal in league play.

Forge would get another massive opportunity just after the hour mark. Kwasi Poku came in from the wing to get to the ball first. Driving in, Poku went for a shot with the outside of his boot, which was saved by Gazdov. It was an audacious effort from the 21-year-old, and an equally brilliant save from the Pacific goalkeeper.

Moments later, Forge seemed to get away with what could have easily been called for a penalty. Andrei Tircoveanu played a cross that beat everyone, but struck Duncan’s arm. Despite the protests from the Pacific players near the play, the referee did not award a penalty.

Just before the end of normal time, Forge had another massive chance to claim all three points. Beni Badibanga played a smart through ball for Daniel Parra. The Mexican full back found Kyle Bekker in the box. The Forge captain took two touches to control the ball, before firing just wide of the target.

Pacific ended the match with 10 men, as substitute Reon Moore picked up a red card in injury time. After Forge was awarded a free kick, Moore took the ball and held onto it. Parra got the ball from Moore’s possession, with the Trinidadian making contact with his opponent in retaliation. The referee saw the incident and decided to send Moore off.

The red card would not have any influence on the outcome, as both teams come away with a point from the match. Pacific, still yet to concede a goal in the league, jumped to sole possession of top spot. They will battle Atletico Ottawa next Saturday, meeting them days later in the Canadian Championship. Both matches will be at home.

For Forge, they drop points for the first time this term. They will return home next Saturday to play the other BC-based CPL side in Vancouver FC. That will segue into their cup clash away to CF Montreal a few days later.

Header Image Photo Credit: Canadian Premier League

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