CF Montréal scored twice in a five-minute span in the first half to defeat Vaughan SC, 2-0, in the preliminary round of the 2023 Canadian Championship at Stade Saputo Tuesday night.
The result ensures an all-MLS meeting in the quarterfinals with Toronto FC hosting Montréal in the latest edition of the Canadian Classique.
After an early scare, which saw Vaughan’s Omar Marzouk get played behind the Montréal defense, only to be done in by a heavy touch, the hosts struck twice just past the half-hour mark to essentially put the League 1 Ontario side away.
Homegrown midfielder Sean Rea settled a headed ball off a corner kick and fired a low shot with his left foot to put CF Montréal in front, 1-0, in the 31st minute.
Sunusi Ibrahim doubled the advantage five minutes later, tapping in a terrific cross from Ariel Lassiter from the edge of the six-yard box.
Chinonso Offor thought he added a headed insurance tally in second-half stoppage time, but it was called off due to offside.
- THE BIG PICTURE: It was vital for CF Montréal’s poor run of form in MLS play to not bleed over to the Canadian Championship, and it didn’t as Hernan Losada’s side snapped a three-match losing streak against the semi-professional side. Now the fun begins, as Montréal and Toronto FC renew their rivalry in the quarterfinals at BMO Field.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: The first goal was a sigh of relief. The second proved to be the dagger. Fresh off arriving via a trade from Inter Miami CF, Ariel Lassiter provided a perfect service and Sunusi Ibrahim slotted home first time.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Sean Rea has worked his way up through the Montréal academy and the Laval native scored his first goal for the first team, which proved to be the match-winner at Stade Saputo.
- MTL: Saturday, April 22 vs. New York Red Bulls (7:30 pm ET | MLS Season Pass) | MLS regular season
- VAU: TBD