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Woodbridge player breathing calmly

Weekend Preview

By League1 Ontario staff, 08/18/23, 6:00AM EDT


The final Men’s Premier Division weekend is upon us and includes a showdown between Woodbridge Strikers and Hamilton United.

Woodbridge player breathing

Woodbridge Strikers need to win to ensure they play in the Premier Division next season

St Catharines look to move up the table

The final Friday match of the regular season has Unionville Milliken visiting St Catharines Roma Wolves. A win for the hosts would move them to 16th from 18th, matching where the Wolves finished last year, albeit before a full weekend of fixtures.

Playoffs to be decided

A midweek 5-0 win for Scrosoppi against Hamilton United has guaranteed they’ll finish top of the regular-season standings for the first time – a remarkable turnaround from their 12th-place finish last year.

Their opponents this weekend, Master’s FA, still have a lot to play for as they can move up to 18th if they win their fourth game in a row and match their longest-ever victory streak.

North Mississauga visit FC London and come into this fixture having won their last two, including a 7-1 thrashing of ProStars. As a complete contrast, the London side were defeated 5-1 by Sigma last time out and will be doing all they can to ensure they don’t finish the season badly. They will however be without star goalkeeper Darlington Murasiranwa who has signed for Canadian Premier League side Valour FC.

Windsor City are without a win in four games and go up against an extremely confident Electric City side who won 11-0 against Unionville. Electric City are currently outside the top six, but only two points below fifth, and a win will give them every chance possible of sneaking into the playoffs.

North Toronto Nitros’ loss on Wednesday extinguished their playoff chances. Their weekend opponents Sigma FC can move up to seventh from ninth with a win – one place better than they finished last year – while the Nitros could move up to eighth from tenth.

Looking to apply some pressure on second-placed Vaughan Azzurri, Simcoe County Rovers need three points against Alliance United. Alliance will be looking to end the season strong, with their playoff chances all but over after one win in six matches. Simcoe have won their last five and would move into second, for at least Saturday night, with a victory.

Hamilton United player on the ball

A point will be enough for Hamilton United to confirm their 2024 Premier Division spot and Woodbridge's drop to the Championship

Sunday showdowns

Vaughan Azzurri face Burlington in a game that will impact both ends of the playoffs. Hosts Vaughan need to win to ensure they finish in second and get the last playoff bye spot ahead of Simcoe.  Burlington must also win themselves to guarantee finishing in the playoff positions. Both teams are unbeaten in their last five.

The final 2024 Men’s Premier Division spot will go to the winner of Woodbridge Strikers’ game against Hamilton United. It should be a very close encounter as these teams are on the same points in the regular season, and only 1.5 points separate them in the Road to 2024 standings with the teams either side of the crucial dotted line. Hamilton are narrowly ahead, and a point will be enough to see them in the top L1O tier next year.

This Premier decider is our Game of the Week and will be streamed live on our YouTube channel. You can also predict the score in our final regular-season Twitter poll.

Looking to secure their place in the postseason are Guelph United as they face ProStars in a high-pressure match. Guelph must win to guarantee staying in the playoffs, but victories haven’t come easily lately with just one in their last five matches. ProStars however have failed to win since May, which could give Guelph the confidence they need to see this through.

Darby will look to bounce back after losing narrowly to Simcoe last time out. They face BVB IA Waterloo on Sunday and need a win to protect their 14th position, while victory for Waterloo could lift them off the bottom of the table on the final day.