2022 Canadian Championship — Preliminary Round Cavalry FC vs. FC Edmonton May 10, 2022 at 7:30 pm MT/ 9:30 pm ET ATCO Field in Calgary, Alberta Watch Live: OneSoccer.ca // Tickets available here

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Just a few days after playing each other in Canadian Premier League action, Albertan rivals Cavalry FC and FC Edmonton go head-to-head in the preliminary round of the Canadian Championship on Tuesday night. Friday's match, at Clarke Stadium in Edmonton, was won 3-0 by the visitors thanks to goals from Joe Mason, Ali Musse and an own goal from Cale Loughrey. It extended Cavalry's unbeaten run against FC Edmonton to 13 games -- all the way back to their first meeting in 2019 as the Eddies have never beaten Cavalry. A large group of away fans made the trip to the match, and were rewarded by watching their team pick up all three points and move into the top three in the table. For Tuesday's match, the two sides head a few hours south to ATCO Field for the first AL Classico of the year hosted by the Cavs. FC Edmonton nearly picked up an away win in Calgary a season ago, taking a 2-1 lead into the final moments of the August 29 match, before Joe Mason came to the rescue and scored a 90th minute equalizer. Mason has scored several goals against the Eddies, including the winner in the preliminary round matchup between these same two teams in the 2021 edition of this tournament. Ben Fisk would double the lead in the second half in Edmonton, and Cavalry left the provincial capital with a ticket to the next round. In the following Canadian Championship match, a quarterfinal against Pacific FC, Terran Campbell scored the winner in a 1-0 win for The Tridents, knocking out Cavalry. This year, if the match is tied after 90 minutes, it will go straight to penalties. The winner of this game will move onto the quarterfinal, where they will take on the winner of the Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Valour FC game on Wednesday.


  • The magic of cup competitions not lost ahead of AL Classico rematch: Whenever the latest edition of any national tournament involving multiple leagues takes place in any country we hear about the "magic of the cup" and the possibilities for smaller teams knocking off the big ones, or "cupsets". We've had a few of those already in Canada -- the Vancouver Whitecaps have been knocked out in both of their meetings with CPL clubs, Cavalry in 2019 and Pacific FC in 2021 -- and had several oh-so-nears, Forge and Pacific holding their own against CF Montreal and Toronto FC in last year's semifinals comes to mind, for example. This year we'll see League1 Ontario champions Guelph United and PLSQ winners CS Mont-Royal Outremont take on CPL opponents in the opening round looking to be the first from their respective leagues to knock a higher team off it's perch, and there are several other potential underdog stories on deck between now and July's final. "It's the beauty, it's the romance of our game. Things can happen in 90+ minutes and we believe in romance, we believe in dreams, we want to go do something special." Koch added that he's been on a few cup runs during his career, and that he and other experienced players in the squad have been sharing their stories with some of the club's less experienced players. "We love the Canadian Championship, it's a great way of connecting the country," said Koch's Cavalry counterpart Tommy Wheeldon Jr. "There's an opportunity to play teams from different leagues, with the guys coming out of League1 Ontario and PLSQ, and even the MLS sides. It's a great opportunity to bring it together."​
  • Koch positive about opportunities for young players: FC Edmonton's off-field situation with their ownership has been well-documented, but there is one positive -- an opportunity to get more minutes for young, more inexperienced players. Edmonton's roster features several of them, including some local prospects, and Tuesday's match may serve as an opportunity to rotate some of them in. One possibility is in goal, where Toronto FC II loanee Andreas Vaikla has played every match thus far, but where The Eddies have a pair of promising youngsters waiting in the wings. Darlington Murasiranwa and Joseph Holliday, born in 2001 and 2005 respectively, are both under contract, and yet to make their season debut. Murasiranwa's debut for the Eddies coincidentally came against Cavalry in this same competition a season ago. "One of the biggest positives of a tough situation is that we're giving young players an opportunity to play," said Koch. "I think people can see it already with the U21 minutes we've played, we've signed a couple of U18 players now, and we're going to use all of these players at some stage this season. We don't have a big enough roster, and the positive byproduct is our U18 development players and U21 players are all going to get an opportunity at some stage."​
  • AL Classico record goalscorer Joe Mason in good form: Only a few weeks into his second season with Cavalry, striker Joe Mason is already tied atop the list of the AL Classico's all-time leading scorers. His four goals against Edmonton, including one on Friday night, are tied with Jordan Brown for the most in this derby's history. Mason is inching his way closer to the top of Cavalry's all-time leading scorers list as well, and has enjoyed a strong start to the 2022 season. In his last four matches, the 30-year-old has scored three goals, helping his side to wins over The Eddies and Pacific FC, as well as a draw away to Forge FC. He also scored against Edmonton in last year's Canadian Championship, the winning goal in a 2-0 victory at this same stage of the competition. He was taken out of Friday's match at halftime for precautionary reasons, but should be available on Tuesday night. "One way to win over your fans is to score against your provincial rivals," Tommy Wheeldon Jr said on Monday. "Joe's on a hot streak, he's doing very, very well, we took him out at halftime (on Friday) as a precautionary, because he was just a bit tight. He's getting good service, he's got good people around him, the midfielders are supplying it for him, the front line are dynamic and creating gaps, and his movement is as good as I've worked with. We've just got to get the ball to him and good things happen."​


Cavalry FC wins: 9* || FC Edmonton wins: 0 || Draws: 3

*not including Cavalry's win over FC Edmonton in the 2021 Canadian Championship

Previous match:

May 6, 2022 — FC Edmonton 0-3 Cavalry FC


“You've got to have a few cheat codes if they switch to a 4-4-2, or a 5-4-1, or a 4-2-3-1. They're capable of playing a various number of roles, so you've got to be prepared for change. It's a different venue, different circumstance, it's a one-off cup game, so I don't expect the same game we had against them on Friday, I actually expect a totally different one. I'm looking forward to seeing what that might bring.” — Cavalry FC head coach Tommy Wheeldon Jr.

“We're not comparing apples to apples this year, Cavalry should beat us every single game that we play. Yes it's disappointing to lose and it's frustrating, but unfortunately I'm a realist at times. We're not going to be successful in every game we play against Cavalry, but the beautiful thing for us right now is that we get another opportunity. We hate losing, it's not fun for anybody. We put that behind us and now we get a chance to go to their place. There have been cup upsets around the world, and we hope to go achieve one of those.” — FC Edmonton head coach Alan Koch

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