Guelph United F.C. to play in the League1 Ontario final

Guelph United F.C./Paul Hendren/L1O

Guelph United F.C. will compete for the title in their first season.

The men’s semi-pro soccer club will face the Blue Devils F.C. on Nov. 7.

The teams have played each other twice this season, splitting the pair of games between them, and attacking midfielder Jace Kotsopoulos said it’s fitting their rubber match is for the championship.

“They’re one of the only teams that beat us this year and they gave us a really hard second game,” Kotsopoulos said.

“They’re a very hard team to score against. As you can see in the last game against Vaughn, they scored two early goals and from that point on they shut down Vaughn from scoring any goals against them.”

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Guelph United F.C. finished atop the men’s west division with a 10-2 record and led the league with 42 goals, 15 of them scored by Kotsopoulos. They beat the Oakville-based club 5-0 on Aug. 29, and the Blue Devils recently defeated Guelph 1-0 on Oct. 17.

Before they began their season, he said they had a lot of confidence in their potential to win the league.

Kotsopoulos said a lot of them already had a lot of chemistry to begin with.

“And I don’t think any of us ever doubted our abilities from the start, other teams may have,” he said.

“With a new franchise coming in it’s always tough to make a statement in your first year, but I’ve played with a lot of amazing players that have played at that next professional level and I think we all believed in ourselves from the start.”

Kotsopoulos added it’s been a collective effort, praising his teammates and coaches.

“I have a lot of respect for all those guys and when I first came to this team, we all had the same vision and we all worked together to put this team together,” he said.

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He said he’s always been treated well by associate head coach and general manager Keith Mason, along with the rest of the coaching staff, and he enjoys playing with all of his teammates including forward Tomasz Skublak.

Kotsopoulos said he expects the final to be a very good battle.

The kick-off is at 4 p.m. at the Ontario Soccer Complex in Woodbridge, Ont.

There is a limited availability for tickets, but you can buy them on Guelph United F.C.’s website.

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