Announcements
*** June Competition Winners: Well done to Le Male (NAPS), Coco69 (KO Cup), Saddlesore (Royal Ascot) & Like2Fish (Poker) ***
*** New Last Man Standing Competition - Win up to £1500 Annually - See Competitions Forum ***
Sign in to follow this  
cluelessG

Canadian Championship - Voyageurs Cup

Recommended Posts

The top 3 Canadian teams play in MLS but they are also taking part in the Voyageurs Cup, which serves as a Canadian championship competition. Semifinal return legs will take place later today.

In the first semifinal Toronto FC rested most of their first-team players and still won the first leg away in Ottawa 0:1. So they are big favourites in the return leg, odds of 1.36 might provide some value, if Toronto starts with their best players. We had the same semi-final last year, Toronto lost the first leg 2:1 (away) but then comfortably won 4:0 at home. They can easily do the same this year but it depends on whether they will leave their stars on the bench. I might place a bet after I see the lineups.

In the other semifinal Montreal Impact won the first leg at home 1:0 against Vancouver Whitecaps. The guest were missing a lot of regular players while the host fielded a strong lineup and dominated the match. They could have scored at least one more goal. Still, 1:0 is a pretty good cup result and it was important to get a clean sheet as away goals are used as tie-breakers.

Montreal have hit good form recently so they are in a good mood. They even managed to get a draw at Portland on Saturday. Which also means they will not be tired from traveling since the Portland - Vancouver trip is a short one.

Vancouver have lost 5 of their last 6 matches (but 4 of these were away games, so you can say they have won 50% of their recent home games). Their coach promised to use strong team this week again Montreal, a team that "can win with a two-goal difference". They say it's an important match but what everyone is talking about is the transfer of Alfonso Davies to Bayern. He missed Vancouver's last match (2:0 away loss at Seattle), then he trained with the team on Monday but now he's allegedly in Philadelphia to watch Bayern against Juve. If he does not play today, it's a huge offensive loss for Vancouver.

I am placing a mid-size bet on Montreal +0.5 (odds around 1.95 with Pinnacle). I don't think Vancouver can win by two goals. The risk is that Montreal will be reasonably happy with a 2:1 loss... and a 1:0 score is not unlikely.

The best approach for Vancouver would be to sit tight and focus on defending for at least 60 minutes, make sure Montreal do not get the vital away goal. Then try to press for a 1:0 win. Which means that there should be value in the odds for Under 2.5 (2.2). I may look into that market after the starting lineups have been announced!

Edited by cluelessG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Toronto FC delivered a routine 3:0 win using a mix of first-team regulars and "second tier" players. Altidore played in the first half, Osorio played in the last 20 minutes (and duly scored), Mavinga got 60 minutes on the pitch, Giovinco stayed on the bench and so did the regular goalie Bono.

The Vancouver game starts now, no Alphonso Davies in the squad but otherwise it's a much stronger lineup than the one from the first leg. Odds for home win dropped a bit. Let's see if Montreal can get a result here, fingers crossed!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for your insight in this competition @cluelessG, last week I saw they where playing and it almost went unnoticed. But again this week I almost forgot about it and it went under the radar. 

Therefore we have the final: Toronto FC vs Vancouver Whitecaps.

With the recovery of Toronto FC main players, can we call it yet for them?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Second leg of the Voyageurs Cup final:

Toronto FC - Vancouver Whitecaps (2:2 after the first leg)

In the first leg the Whitecaps had to play the second half with 10 men after Felipe Martins got a red card. HT score was 1:1, Vancouver somehow took a 2:1 but Doneil Henry scored an own goal (and apparently broke his wrist in frustration) in the 88th minute to make it a 2:2 draw.

Toronto are heavy favourites to win the second leg - 1.53 with pinnacle. There are a few good reasons for this. It's a home game for them, they should feel more comfortable at their own field and it's a long flight for Vancouver. Toronto players Sebastian Giovinco, Gregory van der Wiel and Victor Vazquez did not travel to Vancouver for the first leg but now they are available (Vazquez might be injured) - 3 key players, they should boost the home team. Vancouver have injury troubles - Jose Aja and Jordon Mutch are out; star player Alphonso Davies, Doneil Henry and Brett Levis are game-day decisions; Felipe Martins serves out his red card ban. If the 3 questionable players are not available, Vancouver will have to start with one of their inexperienced Canadian players (they must start with 3 Canadians - Russel Teibert and Marcel De Jong  are regular starters).

Both teams have had a congested schedule for the past few weeks - they played the first leg in the middle of last week and then had their regular MLS matches over the weekend. Chris Mavinga and Jozy Altidore will miss the next MLS game for Toronto, so they should play as many minutes as possible today and get a rest over the weekend. The coach of Vancouver mentioned that he may rest a couple of players - he often rotates striker Kamara, who played in the last 2 matches (but was substituted in both) but he will probably use him again today.

On the other hand, Vancouver are in great form - they have won 3 of their last 5 matches (including an away win at Portland, which is a tough place to visit) and they have drawn the other 2 games (including an away draw at New York City, you don't get many points there).

So yes, I agree that Toronto are favourites but I don't see much value in the odds offered. The draw is available at 4.5 with pinnacle and it's not a bad option since Toronto will win the cup with a 0:0 or 1:1 draw. A 2:2 draw will call for extra time and potentially for penalties.

I will wait for the starting lineups before I place any bets but I don't expect good opportunities for high-stake bets.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Strong lineups from both teams.

Second-choice goalie starting for Toronto, regular keeper Bono is on the bench.

Alphonso Davies and Doneil Henry starting for Vancouver.

I've placed a small bet on the draw, I don't expect an easy win for the home team. Vancouver +0.5 might be an even better option.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Toronto FC took advantage of their key players and they won 5-2, I did not expected that, I was more in the lines of Vancouver AH, they where coming from a good streak of five matches unbeaten, with draw against New York City and win against Portland Timbers.  

Thanks for your contributions @cluelessG, sorry for myself not being more in time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this