Canada is getting a professional soccer league of its very own. The idea had been out there for quite some time with a variety of different reports about the new league surfaces over the past year but we now have access to more details about the proposed league than we have been given in the past.
The new information comes thanks to the Hamilton Tiger Cats group who had to go before City Council to present their proposal to put a bubble over the playing surface at Tim Horton's Field during the winter months. Their proposal for the covering is attached to bringing a professional soccer team to play at the facility so details of that team had to be shared with council.
John McGrane spoke to the council on behalf of the potential ownership group and made it clear that they expect to have a team in Hamilton as early as 2017. That team would be part of a 6-8 team league operating across Canada with the base of operations potentially being in Hamilton.
The Hamilton Spectator's Steve Milton reported on the proposal on Wednesday confirming that the team would be owned by Bob Young and would operate in conjunction with the Tiger Cats of the Canadian Football League.
While the details on the other teams remain unclear at this point in time we do have a better idea of when an official announcement regarding the league could come. Some elements of the proposed league are scheduled to be presented to the Canadian Soccer Association's Annual General Meeting which takes place in May. It is expected that the remaining details of the league will be revealed following that meeting meaning that fans have roughly four months to wait before the full reveal.
What we do know now is that the league will be known as the Canadian Premier League, will have ownership groups with ties to the CFL and the NHL, and will be home to 6-8 teams (some question marks still surround the NASL teams joining this league). The league will also have a very Canadian feel to it with the hope being to not only showcase Canadian talent on the field but also open doors for Canadians to develop their skills in the game off the field.
For now, it is not a lot of details but it is far more than we had seen confirmed up to this point and should put to rest any doubt about whether or not this league is actually happening.