Div 2 Div. 2 CUP 2020

Canucks4Ever

Well-Known Member
Est
Jan 9, 2011
Messages
1,625
Reaction score
1,803
Location
Van-City
Tokens
3,142
Dirty Money
120
The VMSL's biggest tournament, features 59 teams this season, with Division 3's PCOV Benfica the lucky side to be drawn a bye into the second round along with the four seeded teams. While I will admit that the Div. 2 cup, while really being pretty much a total crap chute in general, is outside my regular "expertise", I am nothing if not constant is seems. I have correctly predicted 37 correct match winners in both the last two seasons with last year's 37 for 50 marginally better than 2018's 37 for 51. With an expanded field this season resulting in 58 matches being required to establish a champion, a mark of 37 correct predictions this season would actually hurt my average, so I will evidently need to step up my game! Alright, let's get this lottery started...

Completely Baseless Predictions - Preliminary Round

Westside Black Aces (3A) v VAFC Santos C (3A)
We begin with a bit of an easy one as this is a domestic match up. Black Aces are a mid-table Div. 3 side in their first season in the league. VAFC Santos C used to be VAFC Celtic and were mired near the bottom of Division 3 for a number of seasons. That incarnation of this team went belly up right before the season began and in swooped Santos to save them and make them a reclamation project of some sort, one assumes. That lasted all of three weeks before Santos packed up shop and turned the reigns over to Burnaby Metro to manage. One might have thought that this team might call it a day at this point, but no, to their credit they powered on and continued to show up, more often than not to get pummeled by whomever they happen to be playing. That said they have had a recent uptick in form, smashing another bottom side and then playing out a 0-0 with the second bottom side last week. Maybe a magical cup run awaits, though it seems unlikely. Westside have beaten Santos by an aggregate score of 14-1 in their two meetings this season. This one might be closer, but Westside should move on here. Regardless, Metropolitan A, who will all but certainly be Division 2A champions by the time their cup competition begins await in the next round, so whichever team does win here is all but certainly looking at a one and done scenario.

South Delta Royals (3B) v Euro FC (3C)
Two mid-table Div. 3 sides meet in a fairly easy portion of the draw that will give a handful of lower league teams the chance to win a few matches before Metropolitan A all but certainly emerges from this quarter. Euro are slightly more "mid-table" than South Delta, though the Ladner/Tsawwassen boys have home field which is a bit of a trek. Euro used to be a Div. 2 side once upon a time and South Delta had some time in Division 1 before merging with Richmond and downsizing to just this one team. Not sure if any of those players are still with their respective clubs, but this game looks to be pretty even. I like the home field advantage for South Delta, but Euro have almost twice as many points as them so I will say the away side go through.

Cosmos FC (3A) v Bowen Falconetti (3A)
Another domestic Div. 3 match up and this time it features the second bottom team and a mid-table side. Bowen do not have quite as interesting a story as Santos, but once upon a time when a team from Bowen Island was a novel concept they challenged for promotion from Div. 3 for a few seasons. Lately they have been a shadow of that happy-go-lucky side and mostly struggle for numbers, resulting in lopsided results against. Cosmos are not exactly world beaters, but they are certainly Bowen beaters, having won their other meeting 2-0. In a fun twist these two teams share a home field and kickoff time and were scheduled to play anyway this weekend. Cosmos are now technically the "home" team and are likely the favourites as well.

Siaron (3A) v Romania (2A)
Our first Div. 3 against Div. 2 match it most definitely the MOTR. Siaron are level on top of 3C and hold three games in hand over their closest challenger. They have scored 63 goals while only allowing eight against and are all but certainly destined for promotion to Division 2. Romania were relegated from Division 1 last season and will not be going back any time soon. They sit mid-table in 2A and have been tough to predict this season. After a reasonably good second half of the season that had seen them lose just once, a narrow 1-0 reversal at the hands of first place Metropilitan, while posting impressive wins over the likes of Shaheen and Snipers, they turn around an lose to Westside Junior last week, a team below them in the table. Confounding to say the least. No question Siaron are going to be up for this one as they want to test themselves against a team they could well encounter in the league next year. Plus it is at their ungodly home kickoff time of 10am Sunday morning. I think Romania are ripe for an upset in this one and am tipping Siaron to advance. I would call it my "Upset Special", but I already hung the MOTR tag on it, so we will save that honour for later.

West Hounds (3B) v Vancouver Olympics (3B)
Second year side West Hounds have shown vast improvement from their first VMSL campaign, though they will not be getting promoted this season. Rumour has it they honed their skills this off season by playing in the top tier of the RASA summer league and while the results were not exactly flattering, they gave a decent account of themselves. They seem like a quality group of footballers who enjoy themselves and enjoy their football on the weekend, which serve them well in coming seasons if they stick with it. They have a domestic match up with Vancouver Olympics and it would be interesting to know whether or not Olympics have measured up to what manager Dino Anastopolous had in mind when he revived this franchise for this season. Once upon a time they had climbed as high as Premier before selling to North Delta, creating an interesting chapter in VMSL history. This current team is obviously a far cry from that entity, but perhaps that is what Anastopolous expected coming into the year. The snow claimed one of the matches between these two teams, but West Hounds won the other one comfortably. They are 17 points better off in the table for a reason, look for them to win this one as well.

Strathcona United (2B) v Bombastic A (3C)
After losing the relegation playoff last season Bomabastic a battling it out with another from Divsion 2 (and Division 1) side in Lobbans to see who will get to go back up. Strathcona, meanwhile, might pose the only real threat to Metropolitan in this quarter. That is, presuming they do not play an ineligible player as they have already been caught doing this season. The Eastside side have kept pace with the top sides, going toe to toe and getting results against the teams at the top of the table. In fact, if not for their "indiscretion" they would be level at the top of the table on 35 points. Tough draw for Bombastic here as they could likely have had a bit of a cup run with a kinder draw, especially if they had the chance to play on the sloped hill and China Creek. Such is the luck of the draw though.

HiVE FC (3C) v GFC United Lions B (3A)
Realistically, neither of these sides is likely to get much further passed this round. HiVE are having a better go of things in their third season in the VMSL, having improved from earning just two points their first year, to ten last season, to already being on 15 for the campaign so far this year. GFC's B group, though, have acquitted themselves well after their A side earned promotion last season. They are a solid mid-table outfit and should see this one out with relative ease.

Meraloma A (2A) v West Van B (3B)
Moving into the second quarter of the draw we enter into an absolute deathscape. Six top half teams from Division 2, plus Serbia are in this quarter as well as three more Div. 2 sides and a Div. 3 promotion hopeful in West Van. Definitely a tough draw for them, made even tougher given that they will be away to Lomas and their definite home field advantage on the grass at Connaught. Merloma have seen their form dip from earlier in the season when they were in the promotion hunt and even spent some time in first place. They sit sixth now but hold some games in hand and could climb back into the Provincial Cup conversation. Their home record at Connaught speaks for itself, with Lomas having lost only to Metropolitan there, while also smashing sides, including NK Hrvat. West Van are a decent team and could well be playing in Div. 2 next season, but away to Meralomas they are definitely underdogs.

Snipers (2A) v Vancouver Phoenix (3C)
Our first slam dunk of the tournament come here with Snipers looking to climb into a Provincial Cup spot in Div. 2 against Div. 3 bottom feeders Phoenix. Upsets in the cup do happen, and Snipers have been involved in a few over the years, but there is not much to analyze in this one.

New West SC (3B) v Harps (2B)
Another one that looks to be straightforward. New West are the lesser of the two teams after their split with Royal City created "New West SC" and "Royal City FC" and are a lower mid-table Div. 3 side. Harps are embroiled in an almighty battle with five other teams competing for the 2B title, promotion and Provincial Cup places. Look for them to take care of business in this one.

FC Ria (3C) v 13th Legion (2B)
The theme continues here with another mismatch. First year side Ria have gotten a foothold in lower mid-table Div. 3 but will now get a taste of the next level of the VMSL. After two hearbreakingly close promotion near misses, 13th Legion took a step backward last season. For the first half of this year they looked to be continuing at that level, if not regressing further. However, they are unbeaten in six after being handed the points thanks to Strathcona using an illegible player in a 5-0 win over the Legion. For whatever reason that seems to have been a catalyst for the Italian-inspired club and they are now in the thick of the promotion race once more and likely keen for a cup run as well.

Musqeum Spurs (3A) v Binger's Army (2B)
Following their relegation after a lifetime in Division 1, the Army are valiantly battling to try and return to that level. They are one of the five team right in the thick of it in 2B and this run in to the finish promises to be one for the books. Usually the Army are plotting a route to an Imperial Cup upset this time of year, but now it is them who are the favourites in the Div. 2 cup. Binger's know that cup-sets do indeed happen, so expect them to be prepared for this match. While they are hoping to be doing just a brief flyby at this level, these guys will surely be thinking that they may as well help themselves to some silverware while they are here. Expect them to go for it in this competition and an opening round draw again lower mid-table Division 3 side Musqeum should be a nice way to ease into it.

Vancouver Rangers (2A) v Sarajevo (2B)
Our first all Division 2 match up is a crossover and that is really where the fun happens in this competition. Rangers sit on 17 points in 2A, good enough for tenth, while former Division 1 outfit Sarajevo are on 19 points and sit eighth in 2B. Both teams have negative goal differences, but both are all but certainly safe from relegation. Promotion is, obviously out of reach, as is, all but mathematically, qualification for the Provincial Cup via the league. The cup is really all these two sides have left to play for and, truth be told, it would be a helluva Cinderella run if one of these sides were to go deep, especially coming out of this quarter of the draw! Pure toss up here, but I will go with the former Division 1 side in Sarajevo to advance.

NK Hrvat (2A) v Westside Juniors (2A)
Last year's finalists Hrvat will likely still be ruminating about how they could have possibly failed to score on a Metropolitan side that had two men sent off and were playing with just nine players. Somehow Hrvat managed to lose on penalties and watch Metro claim the cup. However, the larger story is that is was yet another deep run for NK who seem to always save their best for the cup each season. Tough draw for Westside in this one to get a domestic Div. 2 match up, especially when they can look up and down the draw and see plenty of opportunity where they could have potentially carved out a deep run themselves. Alas, such is the cruel reality of the draw. Not all hope is entirely lost, though. They ran Hrvat close in their first meeting, losing 4-3, although the rematch was taken 4-1 by NK. Westside have also picked up wins against Meraloma and, last week, Romania, who sit above them in the table. If they are able to channel that form and not the form that saw them lose to relegation candidates Rino's and Apna then they might be able to pull a Hrvat on Hrvat.
 

Canucks4Ever

Well-Known Member
Est
Jan 9, 2011
Messages
1,625
Reaction score
1,803
Location
Van-City
Tokens
3,142
Dirty Money
120
And Part 2...

SFC Temple (3B) v Regent College (3C)
Moving into the third quarter, first year team Temple host third year side Regent College in Surrey. Regent have settled into a mid-table Div. 3 groove during their time in the league, while Temple have moved over from the FVSL as part of their merger with Pegasus and find themselves in the promotion race straight from the off. It looks as though they are likely to come up just short at the top of 3B, though they do have a showdown with first place West Van still on the horizon that could impact that race. In the meantime, they will get their first taste of the cup. Regent have already faced a trip to Surrey to play a side challenging for promotion this season in their own group, Lobbans, and it did not got so well as they were well beaten 4-2 on the day. Not much reason to believe it will not be a similar fate this time around.

Richmond Olympics (2B) v NorVan Lions (3C)
These are the fun match ups with a mid-table Div. 2 side facing a top Division 3 team, though one that looks likely to miss out on promotion. Neither has too much to play for anymore, but the Div. 3 team often comes in with a chip on their shoulder. Decent odds on an upset here, but Richmond are a veteran side and I think being at home helps them immensely here. They should have a full squad and have been able to put up the occasional result against the top teams in their division this season, so they are likely to have enough to get this one over the line.

France FC (3B) v Burnaby Selects White Eagles B (3A)
After squandering a chance to take their promotion fate into their own hands against West Van, France must now regroup for a tricky cup encounter. White Eagles are again in the promotion race this season, much like they seem to be every year, but they look likely to come up short, much like they seem to do every year. They are a competent outfit though and these sides know each other well having been in the same pool last season, with the away side winning both matches. France have a wretched home kickoff time of 10am Sunday morning, but it did not seem to trouble White Eagles last season. If they can be at full strength they will fully fancy their chances again. For me, this one is all about France's mindset. They have been trending upwards since coming into the VMSL and look to once more be a much improved side this season. They likely deserve to be promoted, but only one team goes up from Div. 3 and that loss to West Van was a hammer blow to their chances. If they can shake it off, then I like there chances here, but if they are still ruminating over their missed opportunity look for Burnaby to take full advantage.

Meraloma B (3C) v Bosna (3C)
This would likely be a "Who cares?" match if there was not the potential for someone in this quarter to go on a bit of a cup run. This is a domestic match up between upper mid-table Lomas and last place Bosna. Despite the disparity between the two sides in the table, their one meeting so far this year was only narrowly won 2-1 by Meraloma. Still, Bosna only have two wins on the year and Lomas get home field advantage at Connaught, making them the favoutites in this one.

Formwerks Boutique (3B) v Gastown (2B)
It has been a tough year for Gastown. After surviving a playoff last season to avoid playing in the relegation crossover playoff, the downtown side are once more mired in a relegation battle. A loss to Twin Arrows last week dented their hopes of automatic survival as a place in the bottom two is looking likely. Gastown seem fragile and ripe for an upset, but Formwerks are in no position to deliver it. After winning three of their first six to begin the season, Formwerks have not won another game. They sit second bottom in 3B and have lost ten of their last eleven games, managing just a single draw over that span. Surely Gastown can get this one over the line.

Lobbans (3C) v Greencaps B (2B)
The only team below Gastown in 2B are Greencaps, the team Gastown beat to avoid the relegation playoff last season. Greencaps would ultimately beat Bombastic in that playoff to stay up, but this season they are looking like the favourites for automatic relegation and a return to Division 3 after just two seasons at the higher level. Lobbans know all about relegation having sunk from Division 1 to Division 3 and being unable to escape, at least until now. They are in a heated race with the aforementioned Bomabastic for a chance to go up. Unlike Formwerks, Lobbans are exactly the type of team who are in the position to spring an upset, especially at home in Surrey where they beat Div. 2 Westside a season ago. Make this one my "Upset Special" as I like Lobbans to advance here.

VAFC Santos B (3C) v Royal City (3B)
Another fun crossover match between a pair of team that look to match up well. Santos were, historically the little brother of Campo and were not off to a great start to the season, losing their first five games of the year, some rather heavily. However, the Burnaby Metro management realignment looks to have sparked a revival and Santos B are now upper mid-table. After storming to promotion in their first season, then finishing dead last and being immediately relegated and finally going through an off season split with New West SC, Royal City are also sitting upper mid-table. They are out of the promotion race this season, but it is not inconceivable that they might be back in contention next season if they can get some stability in their program. The Gray brothers, Jesse and Kyle were what propelled Royal City to their success a few years ago and they are back to leading the team in scoring. This one sets up as a toss up, but if the Grays are in the side then I will give the edge to Royal City.

Coquitlam Metro Ford Lobos (2A) v BCT Apna Tigers (2A)
A fairly straightforward domestic match up here to begin the final quarter. Both these sides were promoted last season, but without a doubt it is a better look on Lobos. They are in the mix for a Provincial Cup place while Apna are all but certain to be heading back down as they sit dead last in 2A. Lobos are at home and won the earlier meeting this season comprehensively, 6-1. Ironically for Apna this exact fixture is on the cards again next week.

Astro FC (2B) v Metropolitan B (3B)
The most overlooked team in Division 2, Astro, host mid-table Div. 3 outfit Metropolitan B. Astro have plodded along and done their thing in Div. 2 again this season. They will not be going up, nor competing for Provincial Cup spots, but they will not be going down either. I would say they are the Binger's Army of Division 2, but Binger's Army are now in Division 2, and in Astro's pool no less. They are the favourites in this one, but Metro B sprung an upset on a lower mid-table Div. 2 side in VanU Rangers last season and Astro are in that sort of territory this year. The B Students also recently knocked off promotion hopefuls West Van in league play, so they are capable of getting a result. The common thread between those two wins was that they took place at U Hill during Metro Sunday night home kickoffs. Unfortunately for them, this one is at Empire on Saturday afternoon.

Vancouver Pumas (3A) v BCT Hurricane Tigers (3A)
After their relegation last season, Hurricane Tigers have done a decent job of steadying the ship and rebuilding. They are at the top of 3A, but Siaron have a mit-full of games in hand. This is a domestic match up with Pumas prowling down near the bottom of 3A. Tigers took the first meeting 5-1 with the rematch getting snowed out. Should be a straightforward win for Tigers in this fully feline fixture.

Coquitlam Metro Ford United (3C) v West Coast Celts (3A)
Instead of donating their Division 2 spots to Celts when they shut up shop last season, West Coast Saints left their clubmates stranded in Division 3. Celts have been in and around the promotion race for the past few seasons and have continuously fallen short. A leg up would have surely been welcome. Instead they are still at the lower level and, in a familiar script, look likely to come up just short again this season. Metro Ford are the latest group of U21s and local buddies from the soccer hotbed in the Tri-Cities to try their hand at putting a team together. Unlike cohorts Lupi and Lobos, United have not had the same instant success. They are near the bottom in 3C and while a Friday night trek to Coquitlam is not high on anybody's priority list, assuming Celts get a halfway decent squad out there they should be able to progress.

Twin Arrows (2B)
v Bombastic B (3A)
A huge win over Gastown has allowed Twin Arrows to breathe easier and put some distance between themselves and the relegation zone. After being perennial relegation candidates, Twin Arrows took the league by storm last year, competing for promotion before ultimately falling short of both that goal and of Provincial Cup qualification. It has been an unwanted return to form for Twin Arrows this season as they are fighting it out at the bottom once more. Bombastic are always a useful outfit and sit mid-table in 3A. Away from China Creek though, you have to think Twin Arrows should have enough in this one, especially riding the momentum from their big win last week.

Rino's Bulldogs (2A) v Marpole Tropics (2A)
The first round is rounded out with another domestic Division 2 showdown. Newly promoted Marpole have established themselves as a mid-table Div. 2 outfit and are safe from relegation this season. The same cannot be said for Rino's as the Bulldogs look likely to be 2A's representative in the crossover relegation playoff. Rino's have only won two matches this season and neither of those was against Marpole, although both their meetings this season were just narrow 1-0 wins for Marpole. The Tropics are certainly never short on self-belief and confidence and a look at the draw reveals that a run to the quarter-finals is not at all unrealistic for this group. They will need to get over this first hurdle though.
 

Macho Man

Active Member
Est
Oct 25, 2015
Messages
77
Reaction score
104
Tokens
346
Dirty Money
100
Harps with the bracket busting loss to New West SC - wonder what happened there
 

Canucks4Ever

Well-Known Member
Est
Jan 9, 2011
Messages
1,625
Reaction score
1,803
Location
Van-City
Tokens
3,142
Dirty Money
120
Only three wrong is a start I will certainly take. Few would have predicted New West over Harps and the other two I missed were Div. 3 50/50s. There are some decent cup matches on deck of this week though, and the action is set to begin mid-week and stretch into the following mid-week with teams keen to free up their long weekend. Could the holiday leave a team short staffed and susceptible to an upset? We shall see...

Round of 64: 24/27

Overall: 24/27


Completely Baseless Predictions - Round of 32

Metropolitan FC A (2A) v Westside FC Black Aces (3A)
Other than picking up bragging rights over clubmates, Division 2 side Juniors, there was nothing much to look forward to for Black Aces after their first round win. Sure their big brother side went out, but now they get to face a team that has caused their fellow Westsiders nothing but pain in their two meetings this season. Metropolitan have secured promotion back to Div. 1 after three seasons toiling in Div. 2 and now get to focus on defending their Div. 2 Cup championship before, they hope, leaving behind this level forever. This would be a massive upset to see anything other than a comfortable win for Students in this fixture.

Euro FC (3C) v Cosmos FC (3A)
Both these teams navigated past fellow Division 3 sides in their openers and now have a chance for a second cup win and the chance to take a swing at an upset in the last 16. Cosmos beat a lowly Bowen side that they knew well, but while Euro are a fellow Div. 3 team, they were a Division 2 team just two seasons ago. They navigated a tricky trip to South Delta in the first round and emerged as winners, now, at home, against another lower mid-table side, they are likely the favourites.

Siaron (3A) v West Hounds (3B)
As predicted Siaron showed their promotion credentials by upsetting Division 2 side Romania in the first round. Siaron almost surely going up this season after near misses in their past two campaigns, although nothing is guaranteed as of yet. They will certainly want to enjoy a good cup run and earn another chance to test themselves against further Division 2 opposition and they have moved their match to mid-week, no doubt to ensure they have a full squad without the long weekend interfering. In an interesting twist, Siaron's ungodly home kickoff time of 10am on a Sunday morning is actually shared by West Hounds, so they would have likely been unaffected by Siaron's usual "advantage." Perhaps a Wednesday night kickoff time restores that edge, who knows? Both these teams have a strong Irish contingent among their core group with usually makes for a good contest. That said, for all the decent efforts West Hounds have put in this season, they will be coming in on the back of an 8-1 spanking at the hands of another promotion favourite, West Van B. In five matches against the top three in their group, the Hounds have lost all five by an aggregate score of 24-2. If that is how they play against top opponents at this level Siaron should skate through.

Strathcona United (2B) v GFC United Lions B (3A)
Fair play to GFC B who got past fellow Div. 3 HiVE in their opener, but this it will be a step up against Strathcona. That said, this in another case of a pair of heavily Irish influenced sides, so that makes things slightly less predictable. Strathcona are also rather enigmatic and mercurial at times and capable of simply not turning up on the day. They seemed to struggle with Div. 3 promotion hopefuls and recently relegated side, Bombastic A in the first round, needing two late goals to turn around a 1-0 deficit and avoid an upset. They are favourites here and should have more than enough to be comfortable, but if they were to find some way to bottle it I am not sure anyone would would be flabbergasted.

FC Serbia United (2B) v Meraloma A (2A)
Now well on top and in control of their promotion destiny in 2B, Serbia can take a run at the cup. They have shown they are decent at cup football as well, making a deep run in this competition last season, as well as reaching the Provincial B final. Lomas looked like there were going to be title challengers themselves in the early going over in 2A, but the wheels came off right about the time reverse fixtures began when they went four straight without a win. It is well known that they do possess a true home field advantage playing on the grass at Connaught and even though their first round fixture was moved to Empire due to weather, they still managed to get past a decent West Van side. Away to Serbia on a Sunday night in Burnaby is definitely not grass at 2pm on a Saturday in Kits. Other than absolutely smashing NK Hrvat at home right before the holidays, Lomas seem to have been really fighting of late making it tough to see them pulling off a win away from Connaught in this one.

Snipers (2A) v New West SC (3B)
Surprise package New West will now have to repeat the feat against another Division 2 side if they want to write the next chapter in their Cinderella story. After knocking off a second place side in Harps, surely they should have little trouble against a fifth place outfit like Snipers. One catch though is instead of their comfy confines at Queens Park, the Div. 3 side will have to trek halfway across the Lower Mainland to UBC for this encounter. After a few seasons of struggles, Snipers look to be back to be a competent Division 2 outfit that challenges for promotion, Provincials and in the cup. They were the biggest winners in round one, putting up a 7-0 win over Div. 3 Vancouver Phoenix. This is the quarter of death and with New West doing them a favour by knocking off another side that would have been eyeing a deep cup run, Snipers will want to take full advantage.

13th Legion (2B) v Binger's Army (2B)
It is a dead heat in this domestic battle with both these teams sitting on 33 points in 2B, although the Army do hold a pair of games in hand. Both teams come into this one on the back of potentially promotion killing results with Legion being beaten 3-0 by first place Serbia and Binger's dropping points in a 0-0 against second bottom Gastown. Both teams remain very much in the hunt for Provincial Cup qualification and the Army surely will not be giving up their dream of an immediate return to Division 1 either, with a match against Serbia still to be played. As for this one, the Army has had the best of their two meetings so far with a 3-1 win and a 4-4 draw. That said, the Legion have played their best football in the second half of the schedule and that 4-4 draw was part of a seven match unbeaten run in the league that was just halted by the aforementioned loss to Serbia. This one is a toss up and could well be a candidate for penalties. Binger's have always treated the cup with the proper respect when they played in the Imperial Cup, always giving it their best even as significant underdogs. Likely they will continue to put their best foot forward in this competition and maybe that gives them the slightest edge.

Sarajevo (2B) v NK Hrvat (2A)
Another good cross over match in this one with the NK train out of the station and off on its usual cup run. Things were dodgy for a time in their opener against domestic rivals Westside Junior, but they ultimately flipped the 1-0 deficit into a 2-1 win. The cup is generally Hrvat's calling card and they will be motivated against a lower mid-table Sarjevo side with little left to play for this season, barring a deep cup run. Statistically, Sarajevo are fairly comparable to Westside so Hrvat should be favourites here. That said, if they play with fire again the way they did in the first round, there is always the possibility that they get burned and the train derails.

GFC United Lions A (2B) v SFC Temple (3B)
Things seem to be coming somewhat unraveled for GFC A. The newly promoted side were right in the mix atop the 2B standings and even looking to be in control at one point, with the idea of back to back promotions a real possibility. However, 2020 has not been kind to them. They have lost three straight matches and are without a win in all four of their matches in the New Year. Goalkeeping issues may be at the forefront of their issues, with the club putting up an SOS on the VMSL noticeboard. They will have a chance to get things back on track here against a Division 3 side in Temple, but, that said, they would do well not to take the Surrey side lightly. Temple have made their way into the promotion battle in 3B in their first season in the VMSL, coming over from the Valley. It looks as though they are likely to come up just short in their bid to go up, but a Div. 2 scalp would certainly add some luster to their season. GFC the favourites, and moving the match to a Wednesday surely is an effort to field their best possible lineup, but this one might be worth keeping an eye on.

Richmond Olympics (2B) v France FC (3B)
After a convincing 5-0 win in their opener against a Division 3 opponent, I am betting against Richmond in this one and making it my Upset Special. France have an incredibly stingy defense and goalkeeper Roman Panet leads Division 3 with 10 clean sheets. FFC have only conceded nine times this season. Richmond are a competent and veteran Div. 2 outfit, but they are not exactly free scorers, averaging under two goals a game. They have also only kept a single clean sheet on the season. If France can get the lead, it stands to reason that they will be very difficult to breakdown. Scoring first is likely to be massive in this game, as it set up to be a cagey, low scoring affair. Richmond are coming off a loss against relegation threatened Twin Arrows who have given up an astonishing 71 goals this season and if their offense struggled against that, then, while it is a step down, granted, France FC have to like their chances.

Meraloma B (3C) v Gastown (2B)
The upset might also be on in this one with Meraloma getting to exploit their home field advantage at Connaught, but Gastown have been playing their best football of late. They are 1-3-1 in their last five and, for a side that looks to be in relegation trouble, that has to be considered decent. Lomas still have an outside shot at promotion in 3C but it seems unlikely. Gastown have been tough to play against of last and that is a characteristic that should serve them well in their relegation battle. The grass at Connaught should make for some ugly football all around and that does not necessarily hurt Gastown. It might take penalties, but I think they get through here.

Lobbans (3C) v VAFC Santos B (3C)
As expected Lobbans toppled Greencaps B in a match that might be emblematic of a changing of the guard with Lobbans looking favourites to go up while Greencaps are looking set to come down. As was not expected, Santos B saw off former Div. 2 outfit Royal City, a top half side from 3B. This is a domestic match up and Lobbans have a pair of one goal wins over VAFC this season, including a 3-2 success just three weeks ago. Expect a close game, but likely Lobbans would be disappointed if this was how their cup journey was to end this season.

Shaheen (2B) v Coquitlam Metro Ford Lobos (2B)
Speaking of domestic encounters, this is a top contest from 2B and serves at the MOTR. Much was made pre-season of Milad Mehrabi, leading scorer for National and Provincial Cup champions CCB, making the move to Division 2 to play for Shaheen. While he did, as expected, romp to the top of the scoring charts with 23 goals, it was not enough to lead Shaheen back up to Division 1 as Metropolitan have claimed the 2A title. Shaheen certainly will not want to finish the season without any silverware to their name though, so expect a decent push to win the cup. That said, recently promoted CMF Lobos have acclimated well to live in Division 2 and are hovering around Provincial Cup qualification. Shaheen did claim the points in their one meeting so far this season, winning 4-2, but Lobos should be up for this one as they look to prove they belong with the big boys of the division. Once concern for Lobos though is their lack of football of late. They were scheduled to host last place Apna in both the cup and then the league over the last two weeks, and Apna forfeit both matches. Add in the snow and Lobos have only played a single match over the past month, a 3-0 loss to Hrvat. Hopefully this match produces another goalfest similar to their first clash. This is all Shaheen have to play for though, so expect them to give it everything they have got.

Astro FC (2B) v BCT Hurricane Tigers (3A)
Sliding in under the radar as usual are Astro. They dispensed with Metropolitan B 4-1 in their opener and now have another Division 3 side on the docket. BCT are a slight upgrade on Students' second team, but the recently relegated side look set to miss out on an immediate return to Division 2 with Siaron in full control of 3A. Hurricanes were handed the benefit of playing their away match at home in the first round when, presumably, Vancouver Pumas could not be bothered to find a field. That will not be the case this time around. Astro are usually pretty on the ball when it comes to making sure lower league sides do not catch them out so, assuming they are not short staffed due to the long weekend, they should have enough to get the job done.

Coquitlam Metro Ford United (3C) v Twin Arrows (2B)
Home field looked to play a decent advantage as CMF United found the only goal on a miserable Friday night in Coquitlam to beat West Coast Celts in the previous round. Celts look to be the only side that might have a chance to supplant Siaron atop 3A and would likely have expected more from their cup run than to be dumped out by a lower mid-table Div. 3 team. United will be at home again in this one, but Twin Arrows are not likely to mind the commute over from Burnaby for this one. While TA are embroiled in a relegation battle, they are picking up the results they need and look set to survive when all is said and done. Just last season they were challenging at the top of the table and there is likely still enough of that pedigree left to take care of business against a team sitting in ninth place in 3C. Not expecting lighting, or monsoon-like rains, to strike twice.

Marpole Tropics (2A) v PCOV Benfica (3B)
Well the dream cup draw goes on for Marpole. They took care of business against relegation threatened Rino's Bulldogs with little trouble and now are rewarded with a home date against a lower mid-table Div. 3 side in PCOV. While the Portuguese are seventh in 3B, it a distant seventh with the bottom six in that pool cut well adrift from the top half. This, essentially, just makes them the best of the worst. They likely would have been underdogs to reach the second round had they not draw the lone bye in the hat. Newly promoted Marpole look set to be favourites again here and that will do nothing to temper the egos of their brash young core.
 

FC Red Star

Active Member
Est
Feb 14, 2011
Messages
116
Reaction score
104
Location
Port Moody
Tokens
232
Dirty Money
100
Harps with the bracket busting loss to New West SC - wonder what happened there
Not to take away anything from New West FC A win over Harps but Harps most likely weren’t even interested in playing Division 2 Cup.

With that loss and out of Division 2 Cup Harps can now focus only on their 4 remaining league games while their competition will be stretched playing League (including make up games) and Cup games.

League Cup games should be played after regular season (League play) is over. From administration stand point alone, it would be significantly easier to organize both, League and Cup, if Cup starts after the League.

If Division 2 Cup did not start yet the League (Division 2 both Pools) would be completed by the end of February (and Cup could start at the beginning of March).

Those Cup games are seriously interrupting the league play. It is enough when the weather causes game cancellations so no need to deal with League games cancellations due to Cup games.
 

Canucks4Ever

Well-Known Member
Est
Jan 9, 2011
Messages
1,625
Reaction score
1,803
Location
Van-City
Tokens
3,142
Dirty Money
120
Not to take away anything from New West FC A win over Harps but Harps most likely weren’t even interested in playing Division 2 Cup.

With that loss and out of Division 2 Cup Harps can now focus only on their 4 remaining league games while their competition will be stretched playing League (including make up games) and Cup games.

League Cup games should be played after regular season (League play) is over. From administration stand point alone, it would be significantly easier to organize both, League and Cup, if Cup starts after the League.

If Division 2 Cup did not start yet the League (Division 2 both Pools) would be completed by the end of February (and Cup could start at the beginning of March).

Those Cup games are seriously interrupting the league play. It is enough when the weather causes game cancellations so no need to deal with League games cancellations due to Cup games.
If there were no postponements for weather or other reasons team with a 22 game schedule would have completed 19 or 22 league games before cup play. After preliminary rounds in the cup teams return to league play to (ideally) play a 20th league game.

The league then alternates weeks between league and cup play (Div. 2 cup has an extra round so it plays back to back cup for teams advancing from R32 to R16 to QFs).

Your point is well taken that leaving cup until after all league games have been played would allow teams to focus on league play. However, what happens when things get postponed due to weather, etc.? Also, the VMSL cups lead to spots in Provincial competition meaning they need to be done by certain deadlines. So if there are postponements in the cup it could create a real headache (just ask the FVSL and Langley Dynamo last season...)

Also, teams may be more or less motivated if they know they have already qualified for Provincials or if they know their only chance is through the cup. Not saying that is necessarily a bad thing, but starting earlier ensures that everybody should be motivated. Remember these are not "playoffs", they are a separate, parallel knockout competitions.

Again, not saying you are entirely wrong, just that there are always two sides to an argument with various issues and benefits and drawbacks to doing things in different ways. No way is going to be perfect and address all issues for all parties. Some people might think your method is the dumbest thing ever suggested, others might embrace it.

As always, if you want change you can have it, you just need a majority of the membership to agree with you and put it to a vote at the AGM.
 
  • Like
Reactions: TC3

FC Red Star

Active Member
Est
Feb 14, 2011
Messages
116
Reaction score
104
Location
Port Moody
Tokens
232
Dirty Money
100
If there were no postponements for weather or other reasons team with a 22 game schedule would have completed 19 or 22 league games before cup play. After preliminary rounds in the cup teams return to league play to (ideally) play a 20th league game.

The league then alternates weeks between league and cup play (Div. 2 cup has an extra round so it plays back to back cup for teams advancing from R32 to R16 to QFs).

Your point is well taken that leaving cup until after all league games have been played would allow teams to focus on league play. However, what happens when things get postponed due to weather, etc.? Also, the VMSL cups lead to spots in Provincial competition meaning they need to be done by certain deadlines. So if there are postponements in the cup it could create a real headache (just ask the FVSL and Langley Dynamo last season...)

Also, teams may be more or less motivated if they know they have already qualified for Provincials or if they know their only chance is through the cup. Not saying that is necessarily a bad thing, but starting earlier ensures that everybody should be motivated. Remember these are not "playoffs", they are a separate, parallel knockout competitions.

Again, not saying you are entirely wrong, just that there are always two sides to an argument with various issues and benefits and drawbacks to doing things in different ways. No way is going to be perfect and address all issues for all parties. Some people might think your method is the dumbest thing ever suggested, others might embrace it.

As always, if you want change you can have it, you just need a majority of the membership to agree with you and put it to a vote at the AGM.
Canucks4Ever,

Look at the current situation in Division 2 Pool B and think if all this is really necessary (and we have similar situation basically every season).

At the top of Pool B (Division 2) there are quite a few teams that still have a chance to win the league (even Strathcona, currently sitting at 6th place and 12 points behind, has a chance because they have a game in hand so mathematically they are still alive; barely but alive).

Anyway, four teams (Serbia, Harps, Lions, and Bingers) are in a full mode competition for a promotion (and a lot of games between those four teams plus some games against Legion and Strathcona, two very good teams, so there is still anything possible.

So, the league already scheduled some make-up games for Feb.21/22/23 and Feb.28. The issue with those re-scheduled games is that they all could be easily cancelled again due to Cup play (Round of 16th scheduled for Feb.21/22/23 and Quarters scheduled for Feb.28/29/March 1).

If Bingers or Sarajevo win this coming weekend their Round of 32 game that means that their rescheduled (or regularly scheduled, doesn’t really matter) league game for Feb.21st will be cancelled. This is most likely to happen.

The same applies to league re-scheduled (scheduled) game between Strathcona and Harps (if Strathcona wins Round of 32 cup game) then their league game against Harps will be cancelled. This is most likely to happen.

GFC Lions and Legion scheduled (or re-scheduled) to play on Feb.22nd their League game. Either of those teams wins their Round of 32 Cup game means that their League game is cancelled. This is most likely to happen.

Serbia and Twin Arrows scheduled to play their League game on Feb.23rd. That game will be cancelled if either of those two teams win their Cup game. This is most likely to happen.

Going forward to Feb.28 when Bingers and Serbia league game is scheduled. The same weekend Quarter-finals Cup games are scheduled. If either of those two teams win Round of 32 and Round of 16 (and they have decent chances to win those games) then that league game will be cancelled too. This is somewhat likely to happen.

Cup Semis are scheduled for March 14th and Cup Final game is scheduled for March 28th. That leaves two weekends in March (7th and 21st) for all those top teams which are playing for a promotion to play up to two make up games leaving most wiith 2 or even 3 more make up games to play which means that League could well run into mid April to finish. Why is this happening when the League could have easily be finished by end of February then Cup could start?

When the League and Cup games alternate every weekend then numerous regular League games are cancelled unnecessarily; instead of dealing only with weather related cancellation suddenly the league has to deal also with Cup related cancellation. Administrative nightmare for no reason at all.

How then, after reading all this, it makes any sense to even start Cup games before the League is done? And this happens every year and the same story keeps repeating over and over again.

Also, BC Soccer does not need to know the name of VMSL Division 2 Cup winner for the draw. Instead of a specific name BC Soccer lists "VMSL Div 2 Cup winner" and problem solved.
 

FC Red Star

Active Member
Est
Feb 14, 2011
Messages
116
Reaction score
104
Location
Port Moody
Tokens
232
Dirty Money
100
By the way, there are 26, 27 weekends between beginning of September and end of February. Two weeks break, count on 2-3 weeks of weather related cancellations and it still gives you enough time to fully complete 22-round League by the end of February.

Division 2 Cup could then start in March. When you are talking about motivation then what is better motivation for teams that already qualified for Provincials through the League then to extend their playing time in Division 2 Cup so they can get ready for Provincials?
The other teams, logically, are motivated by fighting for that one remaining sport for Provincials (and to extend their season).

If the system would be changed then the League would have less issues and administrative problems due to unnecessarily cancelled games (cancellations because of Cup games).
 

Canucks4Ever

Well-Known Member
Est
Jan 9, 2011
Messages
1,625
Reaction score
1,803
Location
Van-City
Tokens
3,142
Dirty Money
120
Again, there is nothing wrong on the face with your proposal. I am just trying to encourage a holistic examination of the situation.

Most leagues mix cup into their regular schedule (look to Europe, look to the MWSL who do a group stage that begins in October, look to youth leagues, look to the Island who play a midweek cup in the fall, etc. etc.).

Just because everybody does it does not mean there is not a better way to be doing things, but it does provide indication that there is a method that the majority seems to prefer or at least tolerate.

For lots of teams, playing in the cup is a nice break from the grind of the league. For teams in mid-table it gives them something to play for again now that they are out of the relegation and promotion races. For teams at the top where the margin of error in the promotion is razor thin, it can be a nice break where you can lose a game and not have to worry about it costing you. Some teams like to give fringe players a chance to get extra minutes, etc.

It all depends on the approach a team wants to take. If teams want to prioritize winning the league, perhaps they do not focus on cup. Or if, like Metropolitan, you have already secured first place, you are free to focus on cup play exclusively. It is difficult to win both the league and the cup which is what makes it an impressive achievement. If because they are focused on league play a higher seeded team tumbles out of the cup then so be it, that is often what makes the competition fun. I, personally, do not believe the tournament should be structured to purely benefit the best teams in the league and provide them with the best chance to win a second trophy, I enjoy a good upset.

I am just trying to highlight that there are PROS and CONS to any structure. Your proposed structure might leave teams no playing a game for a month while league play finishes and then starting cup play.

While you personally always claim to have no particular allegiance or involvement, it is very interesting that your suggestions often seem to contain reforms that would directly benefit FC Serbia.

Would be interesting to hear from someone like @Macho Man from a midtable team like Astro on there opinions of if having cup play start before league plays ends is inconvenient or if it something they look forward to and prefer.
 

FC Red Star

Active Member
Est
Feb 14, 2011
Messages
116
Reaction score
104
Location
Port Moody
Tokens
232
Dirty Money
100
While you personally always claim to have no particular allegiance or involvement, it is very interesting that your suggestions often seem to contain reforms that would directly benefit FC Serbia.
Man, what do my suggestions have with benefiting any specific team? Why would "reforms" (which cannot be applied to the current system; only to future) directly benefit one team? What could "work" ("reform related") for one team this season does not have to work next season or the other way around.

In numerous examples listed above I pointed out that the current system, in my opinion, does not benefit any of the teams fighting for a promotion. Too much sitting and waiting, unnecessary cancellations of league games due to cup play, and postponing the league end for possibly two months!

Let's be realistic. What is more important? League? Or, Division 2 Cup? Whatever the answer is (in your or my opinion) the fact is that the league is always put on a back burner because of the Cup. It does not make any sense to me but I accept your opposite opinion. I am just expressing my opinion, nothing else.

Also, wouldn't it be easier for VMSL Administration NOT to deal with the league's games cancellations due to Cup when they already have to deal with cancellations due to weather? That is the main point I am trying to make.
 

Canucks4Ever

Well-Known Member
Est
Jan 9, 2011
Messages
1,625
Reaction score
1,803
Location
Van-City
Tokens
3,142
Dirty Money
120
Apologies, my choice of the word "benefit" was likely improper. Correct, reforms would only affect future situations and therefore, not "benefit" anyone now. I was merely trying to allude to motivation for the proposed reforms.

Certainly you have a made a seemingly compelling, and most definitely vehement, argument for your point of view. Keen to hear from any others who are perhaps as passionate from the other side of the coin. They might be able to answer your question about which is more important between league and cup. Obviously for teams in the promotion race, you would assume, it is the league. For those outside the promotion race, perhaps they are very keen to get into cup play and do not want to wait around while teams they do not care about fight it out for a prize they themselves cannot win. @big gk you're a big "Cup" guy, what are your thoughts?

Also, while we are on the topic of word choice, the games are not be "cancelled" they are being rescheduled or postponed. The league knows this is going to happen at the beginning of the season, so they are not exactly caught off guard by it from an administrative standpoint. They clearly do not seem to be bothered by the scheduling puzzle as they have done it year after year without compliant.
 

Macho Man

Active Member
Est
Oct 25, 2015
Messages
77
Reaction score
104
Tokens
346
Dirty Money
100
Personally, I love having the cup competition come in when it does.

We're (astro) in a position where there's nothing to play for in the league and there hasn't been since the end of last year. The Cup gives us something to look forward to, a scenario where every game matters again, and helps to rekindle interest in training etc.

This carries over into our end of season league games too, imo. Leads to us ending the season on a high rather than scrabbling together guys to fill out a cup game that could take place weeks after the end of our league season.

End of the VMSL season is always messy for various reasons and I feel like they do a solid job of pulling all the loose strands together
 

nobcheesefinger

New Member
Est
Sep 30, 2019
Messages
15
Reaction score
7
Tokens
122
Dirty Money
0
Lobbans and Santos B game under review. I wonder what that's about?

And what was the sequence of events in the Serbia and Meraloma clash?
 

RL RCD

Active Member
Est
May 31, 2010
Messages
570
Reaction score
212
Location
Richmond
Tokens
32
Dirty Money
100
And what was the sequence of events in the Serbia and Meraloma clash?
I heard that two Serbia's players ended up in a hospital during a game on Sunday (a broken leg and a broken collar bone). All that happened during only 39 minutes of play. After 2nd injury the game was abandoned and remaining minutes were played last night (according to VMSL Meraloma won on penalty kicks).
 
  • Sad
Reactions: nobcheesefinger

username

New Member
Est
Jan 26, 2016
Messages
25
Reaction score
22
Tokens
110
Dirty Money
100
Serbia were up 1-0 after an early pen on Sunday, but the game was called just before the end of the first half. Two terrible injuries for Serbia, both of which required ambulances. The first one was fcuked. Ref called the game after the second injury.

Played the remaining 51 minutes last night. Lomas scored late and won on pens.
I tell you what, the Lomas got some goalkeeper.

Back to the patch on Saturday.

Lobbans and Santos B game under review. I wonder what that's about?

And what was the sequence of events in the Serbia and Meraloma clash?
 
  • Like
Reactions: nobcheesefinger

Members online

Latest posts

Top