A GLANCE BACK WHILE LOOKING FORWARD TO THE NEW SEASON

A GLANCE BACK WHILE LOOKING FORWARD TO THE NEW SEASON

08 Apr 2022

PICTURE: The CSL meets with Southern Ontario teams recently as interest by new teams entering the league increases.

While the Canadian Soccer League is determined to be forward looking, it’s not going to be hard to look back.

With the approach of a new season, the league that was launched in the 1920s is forecasting a much earlier kickoff than the shorter campaign of 2021, a summer tormented by necessary pandemic restrictions due to the increasing prevalence of COVID-19.

The challenge will be to reproduce the kind of competitive, exciting soccer that brought out last year’s steady fan support to Centennial Stadium in Toronto’s west-end.

Several teams are possible newcomers for the end of May kickoff, including York Region Shooters, a team based at Maple in York Region just north-west of Toronto. The club was formed in 1994, merged with Vaughan Sun Devils in 2003 after being purchased the previous year by new owner Tony De Thomasis.

De Thomasis took the club to a new level, winning the Canadian Soccer League championship in 2011, a victory that many attributed to the new owner’s search for and identifying young local talent with promise, a list that includes Atiba Hutchinson, a player born in Brampton, Ontario of parents from Trinidad and Tobago. Hutchinson is now in the twilight of a sparkling career with top clubs in Europe and 95 caps for Canada’s national team, a number that’s expected to increase when Canada plays in the World Cup in Qatar this coming November.

Samad Kadirov, the former coach and general manager with the always impressive FC Vorkuta, is contemplating entry of new team Toronto Falcons  in the CSL, a move that will stir the nostalgia of a Toronto team name in the National Professional Soccer League (NPSL) and the North American Soccer League (NASL) back in the 60s.

In addition to the CSL Championship leading to the final game late October, a new trophy competition is under consideration following last season’s successful  ProSound Cup won by FC Vorkuta. The CSL Championship will again wrap up the season.   Scarborough SC, under new head coach Mirko Medic, won its second championship title in 2021 after lifting the trophy in 2019, a period in which the east Toronto team had a remarkable run of five years (2017 – 2021) in the final.

Stan Adamson

 

 

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