Captain Mike Marcoccia (36', 66') led the way for FC London at their full-house League1 Ontario men's 4-0 home opener victory over Pro Stars FC at German Canadian FC Stadium's "The Cove" facility in London.
Marcoccia's two goal haul was his second brace in a row, after putting two strikes past Sanjaxx in last week's fixture.
"I think our performance was good at times even though it took us a while to build up to what we wanted to do, but we were consistent and stuck to the plan which is why I think we were successful in the end," said Marcoccia.
"The home support was nice to see, there was a tonne of youth. These are the kids we coach in the community, and to see them out supporting us out was very important. The other thing that was very nice was to see fans out from the past years continuing to support our club and the president Ian Campbell."
The match started with both sides stringing together some impressive passing combinations, but neither side able to find an opening. Even clear cut chances went begging as Pro Stars GK Jakma saved a penalty to keep the score level at 0-0 inside the first half-hour.
"It was a clear penalty," said FC London head coach, Mario Despotovic. "We talked about it at the half-time, and I told the player it was not the first nor the last penalty he will miss and it wasn't a big deal for me."
"In every training match we simulate games where we are losing, so the players are used to similar scenarios. If they miss a penalty or something, they continue to play. This was one of the objectives we want to achieve with this team."
Marcoccia opened the night's scoring with a tidy strike from the top of the box, sweeping through a low cross to send the ball cruising into the top corner.
Just seven minutes later a London corner dropped fortuitously to Scotsman Stephen Al-Sayed (43') at the back post for an easy tap-in. The home side would go into the dressing rooms with a 2-0 pad.
Mike Marcoccia (Photo: Martin Bazyl)
Pro Stars rallied to start the half, with Smith getting the best of the early chances just after the restart, but the Brampton side was unable to find the final touch.
"I didn't think we did too badly today," said Pro Stars head coach, Omar Jbalhi. "I don't think it was a 4-0 game. I thought we were on top for the first twenty minutes, but we want to press and it is hard to press at the intensity we want to for ninety minutes."
London wouldn't have long to wait for the insurance goal, with Marcoccia depositing just following the hour mark after making a good late run into the six-yard box.
As Pro Stars opened up to chase the match, London central forward Elvir Gigloaj (78') found himself clear in on a break with Jakma, sidestepping the netminder to finish off a beautiful home league opener for the hosts at 4-0.
Elvir Gigolaj (Photo: Martin Bazyl)
2016 newcomers to League1, FC London have started their inaugural League1 season on the front foot, winning three out of three of their first matches, scoring nine and only conceding one.
"The guys are super happy, and I think we can see how much it means when one sees how many people were here tonight for the home opener," said Despotovic.
"I think the supporters were also happy with the way we played. I just think we should keep playing this way and then even more people will come!"
Pro Stars FC have had difficulty retaining form in the early season, dropping away results in Windsor and London but harvesting a point from their matchweek two home draw against North Mississauga SC.
"We're three games into the season and this game was an improvement over the last one," said Jbalhi. "I was happier with the overall play of the team today than previous games, we played more how we want to play."
Both teams will have difficult home fixtures in matchweek four, with Pro Stars hosting an in-form Sigma FC on Saturday May 21 at Victoria Park, Brampton, and FC London taking on Toronto FC Academy on Friday May 20 at German Canadian FC Stadium's "The Cove."