RECAP: Pacific FC 1-0 Halifax Wanderers FC
Canadian Premier League

Pacific FC kicked off their 2024 CPL campaign on a high note Saturday, as they battled to earn a 1-0 win over the Halifax Wanderers at Starlight Stadium in their opening match of the season, doing so thanks to a first-half Ayman Sellouf penalty.

Along with a strong defensive effort, one that kept a dangerous Wanderers attack at bay, that would be enough to win on the day, as they did well to grind out the result the rest of the way.

The Wanderers had the first good look at goal in this one, as Zachary Fernandez did well to nod down a cross into the pass of Giorgio Probo in the 10th minute, but the Wanderers midfielder would send his half-volley attempt well over the goal.

Continuing a strong start to the game, the Wanderers had an even better look at goal in the 19th minute, as Andre Rampersad found Dan Nimick with a great cross into the box on the second phase of a corner, but Nimick’s header sailed just wide of the goal from in close.

At the other end, however, Pacific started to grow into game, as they tried to figure out what had been a resolute Wanderers defence to start. As a result, their breakthrough didn’t come until the 34th minute, where Aly Ndom managed to drive forward and pick out Reon Moore with a great through ball, which forced the Wanderers defender, Julian Dunn, to give away a penalty as he tried to slow down Moore’s progress.

From there, Sellouf stepped up to take the spot kick, and Pacific’s leading scorer from 2023 made no mistake with his attempt, curling the ball into the top corner to give his team the lead.

Eager to get back into the game, the Wanderers came close to tying things up before half time, as Wesley Timoteo found himself in a nice channel down the right-hand side in the 44th minute, but his low shot would be nicely saved by Pacific’s Emil Gazdov in goal.

Then, right on the other side of half time, the Wanderers had their best chance of the game up until that point, as Probo found Christian Volesky with a ball over the top, but the veteran striker chipped the ball over the net from just inside the box.

Wanting to add to their lead, Pacific had a good look at goal in the 54th minute, as Sellouf teed up Steffan Yeates with a nice cutback, but Yeates shot would be easily caught by Yann Fillion in the Wanderers goal.

Continuing a back-and-forth start to the half, the Wanderers came close again in the 57th minute, as Volesky nodded the ball just over the goal after a dangerous cross from Lorenzo Callegari.

Right after that, Volesky played provider, finding Zachary Fernandez with a great pass, and Fernandez would do well to fire a dangerous low shot, one that forced a great save from Gazdov to tip it just past the post. Then, on the ensuing corner kick, Daniel Nimick had a great look at the back post, one that would also be saved by Gazdov.

Sensing they were coming close to breaching the Pacific goal, the Wanderers flurry of chances continued into the 60th minute, as Timoteo nodded a dangerous cross from Fernandez just wide, before Fernandez volleyed a dangerous Ryan Telfer cross over the net less only minutes later.

Able to relieve some of the Wanderers pressure, Sellouf nearly found his brace in the 66th minute, doing well to cut inside and firing from just outside of the box, but his shot would fly right into the hands of Fillion.

From there, however, other than a couple of dangerous headed attempts from Massimo Ferrin and Cale Loughrey that just went wide of the goal in a late flurry from the Wanderers, Pacific would do enough to hold on, marking their third straight year in which they opened the season with a win at Starlight Stadium.



Pacific FC: Gazdov; Mukumbilwa, Meilleur-Giguère, Amedume (Lajeunesse 61′), Ndom; Zanatta, Young, Lamothe (Toussaint 61′), Yeates, Sellouf (Reid 84′); Moore (Heard 72′)

Halifax Wanderers FC: Fillion; Nimick, Dunn, Loughrey; Fernandez (Ferrazzo 81′), Callegari, Rampersad, Timoteo. (Gagnon-Laparé 81′); Probo (Daniels 72′), Volesky (Ferrin 72′), Telfer (Giraldo 86′)


35′ — Ayman Sellouf (Pacific FC) (pen.)


24′ — Yellow: Reon Moore (Pacific FC)

28′ — Yellow: Thomas Meilleur-Giguère (Pacific FC)

56′ — Yellow: Aly Ndom (Pacific FC)

86′ — Yellow: Dan Nimick (Halifax Wanderers FC)