Canada Soccer’s largest field ever for the Canadian Championship will kick off this week with six knockout matches from Tuesday to Thursday in the First Round of the 2023 competition. The action kicks off Tuesday night in both Hamilton and Montréal when the annual Battle of the North for the Voyageurs Cup gets under way.

Twelve of the 14 clubs in this year’s competition will compete in the First Round while last year’s winners Vancouver Whitecaps FC and runners up Toronto FC received an automatic bye into the Quarterfinals.

On Tuesday, Forge FC Hamilton host first-time participants FC Laval while CF Montréal host returning participants Vaughan SC Azzurri, who last featured in the Canadian Championship four years ago in 2019. Forge FC Hamilton were runners up in the 2020 edition (played as a one-match competition in 2022) while CF Montréal are five-time Canadian Championship winners from 2008, 2013, 2014, 2019 and 2021.

On Wednesday, the first-ever Canadian Championship double header at Toronto’s York Lions Stadium opens with Halifax Wanderers against Atlético Ottawa and concludes with York United FC against first-time participants Vancouver FC. On the west coast later that same evening, first-time participants TSS Rovers FC host Winnipeg’s Valour FC at Burnaby’s historic Swangard Stadium. For out-of-town fans, all three matches will be featured in succession as a triple header via the OneSoccer broadcast.

On Thursday, the First Round wraps up with Pacific FC hosting Cavalry FC at Vancouver Island’s Starlight Stadium. In previous year’s Canadian Championship match-ups between the two sides, Calgary’s Cavalry FC won the 2019 series while Langford’s Pacific FC won the 2021 series. Cavalry in fact reached the Semifinals of the 2019 competition after knocking off Pacific FC, Forge FC Hamilton and Whitecaps FC.

Beyond the First Round, the six April winners will advance to the Canadian Championship Quarter-Finals from 9-11 May where they will join last year’s two finalists, champions Vancouver Whitecaps FC and runners up Toronto FC who both received byes from the First Round.

Tuesday 18 April 2023
Forge FC Hamilton v FC Laval
Hamilton, Ontario – Tim Hortons Field
Kickoff – 19.00 local (19.00 ET / 16.00 PT)

CF Montréal v Vaughan SC
Montréal, Québec – Stade Saputo
Kickoff – 19.00 local (19.00 ET / 16.00 PT)

Wednesday 19 April 2023
HFX Wanderers FC v Atlético Ottawa
North York, Ontario – York Lions Stadium
Kickoff- 17.00 local (17.00 ET / 14.00 PT)

York United FC v Vancouver FC
North York, Ontario – York Lions Stadium
Kickoff- 20.00 local (20.00 ET / 17.00 PT)

TSS Rovers FC v Valour FC
Burnaby, British Columbia – Swangard Stadium Kickoff
Kickoff – 19.30 local (22.30 ET / 19.30 PT)

Thursday 20 April 2023
Pacific FC v Cavalry FC
Langford, British Columbia – Starlight Stadium Kickoff
Kickoff – 19.00 local (22.00 ET / 19.00 PT)