PREVIEW: Vancouver FC vs. Cavalry FC (CPL On Tour: Kelowna) — 2024 Match #39
Canadian Premier League

2024 CPL Regular Season — Match #39
Vancouver FC vs. Cavalry FC
June 16, 2024 at 2 p.m. PT/3 p.m. MT
Apple Bowl in Kelowna, British Columbia
Watch Live: OneSoccer // Tickets available here

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The Canadian Premier League is hitting the road this weekend, as the first ever CPL On Tour match touches down in Kelowna, British Columbia.

Vancouver FC, sitting happily in second place in the CPL after posting a 4-2-3 record in their first nine matches, will look to return to the win column in what’s technically a home game for them, although not quite in their typical home of Langley. Instead, they’re hoping to find some home comforts in a different part of B.C. as they host Cavalry FC in the Okanagan.

Cavalry, currently fifth in the league with a 2-6-1 record, are in good spirits after winning at home last weekend, beating Forge FC 1-0 thanks to a stellar all-around team performance.

The Calgary-based club relieved some frustration with that win last Saturday, and now find themselves on an eight-game unbeaten streak, their only CPL loss of 2024 coming in the first game of the season.

It’ll be a celebration of Canadian soccer in Kelowna on Sunday, and the many in attendance at the Apple Bowl experiencing their first CPL match should be treated to quite the spectacle on the pitch.

“It’s really cool,” Cavalry captain Marco Carducci said about the buzz in Kelowna this weekend. “The preparation for us stays the same, but it almost feels like a special game. At the end of the day it’s three points on the line for both of us and we’ll approach it that same way, but I’ve heard even as we’ve got here, in the last couple days, people know about the game, they’re very excited about it. I’m sure there are some soccer fans that don’t really know what the CPL is all about yet, and this is just a super exciting opportunity to show them.

“I think we have a responsibility as players to engage with the fans and ultimately put on a good show on the weekend.”

Vancouver and Cavalry have met twice already this year — once in the league and once in the Canadian Championship, both at ATCO Field — and the Cavs have won both times, most recently a 3-1 triumph where Tobias Warschewski scored twice and earned himself a Player of the Week nod.

Matches between these sides have gotten a little feisty in the past, and Vancouver would love nothing more than to finally beat Cavalry for the first time in club history, in a match where there may be a few more eyeballs on them.

Both sides will have plenty of weapons to deploy on Sunday; Vancouver boss Afshin Ghotbi said he’s selecting from an almost full-strength squad as Rocco Romeo and Kadin Chung are back to fitness after some injury concerns and Vasco Fry is eligible after serving a suspension last week, while Mikaël Cantave has returned from his spell with the Haitian national team. James Cameron, however, is away from the group with the Canadian U-20 team.

Cavalry, meanwhile, are likewise in good shape, especially with striker Malcolm Shaw returning from international duty with Trinidad and Tobago.

The same three points as usual will be on the line in Kelowna, but this is sure to feel a little more special than any other regular season match.

All CPL matches are available to stream on OneSoccer, FuboTV, or on TELUS Optik TV Channel 980.


  • Ghotbi calls for mature performance against Cavs: Vancouver FC have never beaten Cavalry, and the only draw between the sides was their first ever meeting in VFC’s home opener last year. In their two defeats to the Calgary side earlier this year, head coach Afshin Ghotbi felt his team had been somewhat naïve, so in his press conference on Friday he called for Vancouver to be a little bit more mature in this third meeting of 2024 — taking care of the ball, and avoiding individual errors especially at the back. “I feel [Cavalry]’s gamesmanship is better than ours,” Ghotbi added. “The experience they have has been better than ours. I feel that in both games the result could’ve been different, but the moments we have to be flawless we made mistakes and the moments we have to be precise we were not precise.”
  • Cavalry firing on all cylinders after Forge win: There’s probably less tension in the Cavalry camp this week than there was heading into last Saturday’s game against Forge, which they entered having drawn each of their prior four league matches. Not only did they beat Forge, always a good feeling for them given the two sides’ history together, but it was probably Cavalry’s best performance in a CPL game yet this year. Much like last season, where Cavalry likewise won just one of their first eight games, the club feels that their frustration-breaking win could be the beginning of a run that carries them up the table.
  • High-tempo, intense game expected at the Apple Bowl: Asked what fans might be able to expect on the pitch in Sunday’s match, Afshin Ghotbi suggested it could be a physical encounter. There’s certainly a history of intensity in games between these sides, dating back to their first encounter in VFC’s first-ever home match in 2023. In six meetings between Vancouver and Cavalry, there have been five players sent off — including Shamit Shome in this year’s Canadian Championship matchup. Ghotbi added that the Apple Bowl’s grass pitch is narrower than most CPL surfaces, which will bring players closer together and further increase the likelihood of a more intense, back-and-forth game. All that’s to say, this should be an entertaining one…


Vancouver FC: Irving; Chung, Enyou, Norman, Gee; Bitar, Fry, Garcia, Fisk; Dyer, Díaz

Cavalry FC: Carducci; Aird, Kobza, Klomp, Field; Trafford, Gutiérrez; Warschewski, Camargo, Akio; Shaw


Vancouver FC wins: 0 || Cavalry FC wins: 5 || Draws: 1

Last meeting:

May 4, 2024— Cavalry FC 3-1 Vancouver FC


“I expect a game that will be very, very physically demanding on the players’ side. I believe it will be a game that will be very close and tight, it will be a moving chess game, a very tactical game. But I think one thing that will catch the eye of the fans is the spirit both teams will bring to the match. There are a lot of winners on both sides, players that are winners, coaches that are winners, and that in my opinion will create a great fixture.”  — Vancouver FC head coach Afshin Ghotbi

“We’re excited to be here. It’s nice to come to a new market in Canada and showcase what we have not only as a league but what we have internally as a team as well.”  — Cavalry FC assistant coach Nik Ledgerwood