VANCOUVER, BC – Back-to-back Canadian Champs!
Vancouver Whitecaps FC claimed their second straight Voyageurs Cup title following a valiant 2-1 victory against rivals CF Montréal at BC Place on Wednesday. With the championship in hand, the 'Caps also become the first MLS club to qualify for the revamped 2024 Concacaf Champions Cup.
The 'Caps piled on the attack early on, only to see goalkeeper Jonathan Sirois stand on his head to keep Montreal in the match. First came an incredible diving stop on a header from Tristan Blackmon sixth minute, then an even more miraculous kick save on a deflected shot from Levonte Johnson only a minute later. And he wasn't finished there. A huge dive to deny a strike from Julian Gressel in the 15th minute, and then another low effort to deny Brian White in the 42nd minute.
CF Montréal nearly threated just before the break, as Ariel Lassiter‘s low strike was saved by Yohei Takaoka as both goalkeepers exchanged netminding displays right before the first half whistle blew.
In the second half, the 'Caps would finally open the scoring. In the 58th minute, Julian Gressel sent a long ball into the box, which ended up on the foot of White who got past goalkeeper Sirois and put it into the empty net to give his squad a 1-0 advantage.
Fast forward to the 66th minute, and Ryan Gauld helped the 'Caps double the lead. After being taken down in the box, he took the penalty shot himself to extend the lead to 2-0.
However, the visitors refused to put their heads down. Sunusi Ibrahim’s got in behind and tucked it away into the back of the net, cutting the score in half in the 83rd minute of the match.
As the match neared its end, Montréal looked to find the equalizer in the late stages. Following a cross whipped in the area, Ibrahim's header was saved by Takaoka in the 91st minute.
Moments later, Vancouver then went on a counter attack created by Gauld, but substitute forward Déiber Caicedo’s attempt flew past the post.
One last attempt was sent in from the away side following a free kick set piece. Mason Toye had the ball at his feet in front of goal, but heroic defending prevented him from getting off a clean shot as Takoaka held the ball as the final whistle blew at BC Place, with the ‘Caps claiming their third Voyageurs Cup in club history.
The 'Caps are right back at BC Place this coming Saturday, June 10 as they host league-leading FC Cincinnati at 7:30 p.m. PT. Tickets are available at whitecapsfc.com/tickets.
Best Young Canadian Player: Ali Ahmed
George Gross Most Valuable Player: Julian Gressel
Referee: Filip Dujic
Scoring Summary57’ – VAN – Brian White (Julian Gressel)
66’ – VAN – Ryan Gauld (penalty kick)
83’ – MTL – Sunusi Ibrahim (Mathieu Choinière)
Possession: VAN 48.6% – MTL 51.4%
Shots: VAN 20 – MTL 9
Shots on Goal: VAN 9 – MTL 5
Saves: VAN 4 – MTL 7
Fouls: VAN 9 – MTL 7
Offsides: VAN 0 – MTL 2
Corners: VAN 10 – MTL 2
Cautions3' – MTL – Ariel Lassiter
58’ – MTL – Rudy Camacho
85’ – VAN – Sebastian Berhalter
Vancouver Whitecaps FC18.Yohei Takaoka; 23.Javain Brown, 4.Ranko Veselinović, 6.Tristan Blackmon, 27.Ryan Raposo (14.Luís Martins 59’); 19.Julian Gressel (7.Déiber Caicedo 89’), 20.Andrés Cubas, 31.Russell Teibert © (45.Pedro Vite 59’); 28.Levonte Johnson (16.Sebastian Berhalter 73’), 25.Ryan Gauld; 24.Brian White (9.Sergio Córdova 89’)
Substitutes not used
1.Thomas Hasal, 29.Simon Becher
CF Montréal40.Jonathan Sirois; 25.Gabriele Corbo (10.Bryce Duke 83’), 4.Rudy Camacho, 16.Joel Waterman; 22.Aaron Herrera (15.Zachary Brault-Guillard 67’), 2.Victor Wanyama © (21.Lassi Lappalainen 67’), 29.Mathieu Choinière, 11.Ariel Lassiter; 7.Ahmed Hamdi (19.Nathan Saliba 67’); 14.Sunusi Ibrahim, 9.Chinonso Offor (13.Mason Toye 78’)
Substitutes not used
41.James Pantemis, 24.George Campbell