Beaten at their own game

CAMERON MAXWELL -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 8:54 AM ET

When it comes to indoor soccer, Canada can hold its own.

Sure, the Vancouver All-Stars might not have boasted some of the household names like their Scottish counterparts in yesterday's Legends of Soccer championship game at the Saddledome.

But when the final whistle sounded, the Vancouver side had soundly drubbed the Scots 7-1 to take the title for the first time.

Not bad for a bunch of guys who pretty much play outdoors year-round on the West Coast.

"In our first match we were running around like fools out there," said Vancouver forward John Catliff, who has appeared in more caps for Canada (43) than any other player.

"We play outdoors every Sunday, so we don't know how to control the ball.

"But at the same time, we had a lot of fast break goals ... and I think over the course of the two tournaments, we learned how to play this game."

Indeed.

Early in the game, the Scots controlled the ball for nearly four minutes but Vancouver stayed in its zone, waited for a turnover, then pounced and the route was on.

The Vancouver side had to rally from a 2-0 deficit against the Calgary All-Stars to earn a berth into the final and got a goal from Tony Fonseca with 25 seconds left to beat Calgary 3-2.

The Stampede City side would have advanced with a tie or a win.

For Catliff, 41, who started his pro career in Calgary with the Kickers, the tournament was a blast, especially getting to play against some players he idolized.

"For me, it's great because I grew up watching all these guys on the limited telly that we got in from the U.K.," said Catliff, who is in the Canadian Soccer Hall of Fame and the Harvard University Hall of Fame.

"So they're all household names to people that are in the soccer community who are our age.

"Certainly they're not to the younger fans."

Catliff actually played against some of the Scottish players internationally.

"I played against Scotland and two of the players on their team," he said with a laugh.

"They don't remember me but they went on to much more illustrious careers

"It's nice to see them again."

The Legends event also featured an English All-Star side that didn't fare particularly well yesterday, going 1-2 in the round-robin and scoring just four goals.

Calgary ended with a 1-2 record as well, while Vancouver and Scotland were both 2-1.


Videos

Photos