CPL Winners Forge FC ranked second in successful throw-ins across the 2022 season - at 90.9%. They exceled through movement off the ball to create space, and a series of meticulous routines to unbalance the opposition. Here is how they achieved success.
Alessandro Hojabrpour has been one of the standout performers of the past two seasons in the Canadian Premier League. Playing in an understated defensive midfield role where he's required to proactively participate in all phases of the game, Hojabpour has also been a name that has gone relatively unnoticed when compared to some of his CPL peers. At 22 years of age, with the maturity of someone in their mid-twenties, Hojabrpour should be on the radar of every single MLS club, and soon enough on the radar of our national team. Here is my analysis of the remarkabilities to Alessandro Hojabrpour in 2022, and why he's one of the best midfielders that Canada has to offer.
Among a host of changes to the game and innovations popping up at every turn, short corners remain an understudied facet of the game. While they often frustrate fans in stadiums when they ultimately come to nothing, the right short corner kick routine can bear fruit for any team, creating an overload before whipping the ball into the box.
The 2022 CPL season has officially come to an end, with a thrilling final between Atletico and Forge ending in another victory for the Hammers - their third CPL Playoff win in four years. Forge bamboozled Atletico Ottawa on the day, completely stunting their quick attacking transitions, while dominating the flow and possession of the match. Here is our tactical analysis of the final, and how Forge came out the other side as victors once more.
After a long, hard-fought Canadian Premier League season, tomorrow will see the attacking fluidity of Forge meet the defensive solidity of Atletico Ottawa in the CPL Playoff final. The season saw an intense top four battle between the two playoff finalists alongside Pacific and Cavalry over the past seven months, and we are now one day away from the finale to what has been an explosive, groundbreaking season for the CPL. Here is our tactical preview of the final, and what both teams may look to do ahead of tomorrow.
While it wasn't the most explosive semi-final match inside the CPL Playoffs, Forge and Cavalry met for an intriguing tactical battle of wits inside the semi-final first leg, settling for a 1-1 draw. Here is our match analysis of the first-leg encounter between Cavalry and Forge, and what both teams may look to do ahead of the second-leg.
I've spent many hours across the past eight months watching and scrutinizing over the Canadian Premier League. The 2022 campaign saw several seasoned stars move onto pastures new across Europe, and a race for first that came down to the final day. Now that the regular season has officially come to a close, it's time for me to pick my 2022 CPL Team of the Season.
Rezart Rama has quickly become a fan-favourite at Forge FC, with his endless energy sources rampaging around the pitch at every turn. An absolute warrior, beast at the back, and more or less a complete defender, Rama is a pivotal marker for success that the Hammers want to have on the ball at every turn. It shows up in the stats, with the 21-year-old completing the most progressive passes and passes into the final third per 90 of any player to make more than 2 appearances in the league this season.
The 21-year-old's remarkable mobility, fast-paced aggression, and incisiveness in the final third makes him a jack of all trades from a defensive perspective, punching well above the weight of a Canadian Premier League defender. So with that, we analyze Rama's remarkable rise this season, and assess just how far he could take his career.
At the start of the 2022 CANPL season, Woobens Pacius appeared to have lost his place at the top of Forge FC's attack. The Hammers had brought in Pacific icon Terran Campbell, who had haunted Forge among many other Canadian Premier League teams en route to Pacific's Playoff victory in 2021. But Forge's attack didn't fully click in the opening weeks of the season, and they struggled to find the right chemistry, particularly with Campbell's desire to engage lower on the pitch and support the play. In came Woobens Pacius to restore faith to Forge's fervid attack, and the Hammers immediately went on a stunning run of form.
On Sunday July 31, 2022, Alexander Achinioti-Jönsson became the first non-Canadian player to make 100 appearances in the Canadian Premier League. As an integral member to the league's best side, Jönsson has arguably been the player of the season so far in the 2022 season, featuring in all but one match. What's more - he's played admirably in not one but two positions this season, splitting his playing time between the right-side of centre-back and defensive midfield. Here is an analysis of one of the CANPL's best players - 26-year-old Alexander Achinioti-Jönsson.
Despite sitting in third place in the Canadian Premier League table, you could make the argument that Forge FC have been the best side in the league. The Hammers have accumulated the same amount of wins as Cavalry and Pacific ahead of them, each of whom have played more games. In that time, Smyrniotis' side have conceded just 13 goals, scoring 31 along the way, the best record in both categories. So with that, we analyze the Canadian Premier League's most dominant team, and what lies in store for the remainder of the season for Forge FC.
The atmosphere inside Tim Hortons Field was electric on Sunday, culminated by a string of impressive performances leading toward another top class win over first-placed Pacific FC. The Hammers dominated the tempo of the match from start to finish, with the entire squad in full flow and complete harmony over a tired Pacific team. Impressively, Forge's recent run of form has been accompanied by the introduction of two new faces to the team - Malik Owolabi-Belewu and Rezart Rama. Both have fit like a glove in Bobby Smyrniotis' side, pushing others into roles that allow the entire team to achieve equilibrium and stability. Here is our match analysis of Forge's 3-0 win over Pacific, and the impressive accomplishments of Owolabi-Belewu and Rama since entering the frame.