Cana­dian Cham­pi­onship up to 13 clubs as CPL kicks off

The Recorder & Times (Brockville) - - SPORTS - NEIL DAVID­SON

TORONTO — The cana­dian cham­pi­onship will ex­pand to 13 teams in 2019 with the ad­di­tion of seven cana­dian Premier league clubs.

They join Toronto Fc, mon­treal im­pact and van­cou­ver White­caps from ma­jor league soc­cer, ot­tawa Fury Fc from the united soc­cer league an date am from both league 1 on­tario and the Premiere ligue du soc­cer de Que­bec (PLSQ).

as de­fend­ing cham­pion, Toronto will en­ter the five-round com­pe­ti­tion in the semi­fi­nals, one round af­ter van­cou­ver, mon­treal and ot­tawa join in.

all three mls teams joined in the semi­fi­nal round in 2018, when the field was just six teams.

Four of the CPL teams will en­ter the com­pe­ti­tion at the first hur­dle while the re­main­ing three will come in at the sec­ond. a cana­dian soc­cer as­so­ci­a­tion spokesman said that was done be­cause there needed to be a split be­tween the first two rounds with 13 teams com­pet­ing.

“With­out a com­pe­ti­tion re­sult to pro­vide seed­ing, the time­lines un­der which the clubs be­came pro­fes­sional clubs in mem­ber­ship of canada soc­cer pro­vided a fair ba­sis for place­ment,” the spokesman said.

The five-round, 24-match com­pe­ti­tion kicks off may 15 with the two-legged fi­nal set for sept. 18 and 25. The tour­na­ment win­ner hoists the voyageurs cup and will rep­re­sent canada in the 2020 sco­tia­bank cham­pi­ons league.

“The cana­dian cham­pi­onship has evolved into a true do­mes­tic cup com­pe­ti­tion with mul­ti­ple lev­els of en­trants all bat­tling to se­cure a cov­eted sco­tia­bank CONCACAF cham­pi­ons league spot,” cana­dian soc­cer as­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent steven reed said in a state­ment.

The CPL is sched­uled to kick off its in­au­gu­ral sea­son in april.

“our vi­sion is to cre­ate a solid foun­da­tion that will con­tinue and grow the game and help cana­di­ans be a force on the world stage. The cana­dian cham­pi­onship presents an­other in­cred­i­ble op­por­tu­nity for our play­ers to ex­cel and show­case their abil­i­ties at the club level,” CPL com­mis­sioner david clanachan said in a state­ment.

asked if the new league had any is­sue with the two-tiered en­try in 2019, a CPL spokesman said “sched­ule” ques­tions should be di­rected to the cana­dian soc­cer as­so­ci­a­tion.

each of the 2019 cana­dian cham­pi­onship rounds will be con­tested in a home-and-away for­mat.

The first qual­i­fy­ing round, to be played may 15 and 22, will fea­ture six teams: PLSQ’s as Blainville and league 1 on­tario’s vaughan az­zurri plus the CPL’s Pa­cific Fc (vic­to­ria), cav­alry Fc (cal­gary), york 9 Fc (north Toronto) and HFX Wan­der­ers Fc (Hal­i­fax).

The four CPL teams that start in the first round got their canada soc­cer mem­ber­ship in 2018. Blainville, part of last year’s field, and vaughan can­not not be drawn to­gether in the qual­i­fy­ing round.

The sec­ond round, to be played June 5 and 12, fea­tures the firstround win­ners and Fc ed­mon­ton, Forge Fc (Hamil­ton), and val­our Fc (Win­nipeg).

Fc ed­mon­ton gets a bye to the sec­ond round as a team re­turn­ing to the cana­dian cham­pi­onship as a CPL mem­ber. Forge Fc and val­our Fc en­ter in the sec­ond round by virtue of ac­quir­ing their canada soc­cer pro­fes­sional club sta­tus in 2017.

The mon­treal im­pact, van­cou­ver White­caps and ot­tawa Fury Fc will come into the com­pe­ti­tion in the third round, sched­uled for July 10 and 24, fac­ing the three sec­on­dround win­ners.

The three third-round win­ners will join Toronto in the semi­fi­nals, aug. 7 and 14.

each of the two-legged rounds will be de­ter­mined by ag­gre­gate score over the two legs. in the event of a tie, away goals will be used to de­ter­mine the win­ner. in the event that does not de­cide the out­come, the game will go straight to penalty kicks.

THE CANA­DIAN PRESS FILES

Toronto FC's Jay Chap­man, left, bat­tles for the ball with Ot­tawa Fury FC's Stee­van Dos San­tos dur­ing Cana­dian Cham­pi­onship soc­cer ac­tion last July.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.