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Northern Exposure: Jonathan David becomes the focus of FIFA.com feature

Check out all that went down North of the border in this week’s Canadian Soccer wrap up

Canada v Cuba: Group A - 2019 CONCACAF Gold Cup
Jonathan David #20 of Canada celebrates 1st goal during a group A match between Canada and Cuba at Bank of America Stadium on June 23, 2019
(Vega/Getty)

Jonathan David focus of FIFA feature

Rising star Jonathan David was the focus of a new article on FIFA.com. With 28 goals combined in 2019 between his club team KAA Gent and the Canadian National Team he is the highest scoring Canadian forward in the last 20 years. Pretty impressive for someone who didn’t start playing organized soccer until the age of ten.

The golden bull which is highlighted in this article is a lovely bit of Belgian soccer tradition. The golden bull is a weekly award given out to the player who is at the top of the Belgian league for goals that week. This award is demonstrated by printing a golden bull on the back of the player’s jersey. Jonathan has attained this award once so far in his time playing in Belgium. The article contains a great video of Jonathan’s jersey being printed and then him receiving this award in front of all of his teammates.


Whitecaps launch aid campaign for Vancouver aquarium

In a noble effort to keep the public safe from COVID-19 the Vancouver Aquarium closed its doors on Mar 17 and has remained closed ever since. Unfortunately an expensive operating budget mixed with a lack of revenue has put the aquarium at risk of permanent shut down.

Soccer team to the rescue! The Vancouver Whitecaps stepped up in a big way and started a campaign asking everyone to purchase a mask with proceeds going to the aquarium. MLS jumped in too and helped spread the word. Within only a few days there was more than $1,000,000 sold in facemasks with orders still coming in. You can get yours by visiting the Vancouver Aquarium website.

This is a demonstration of what a soccer team can do to support its city in times of crisis. In a press conference that was organized only a few days after the announcement of the aquarium’s struggles Whitecaps CEO Mark Pannes stated, “You know what? We can help here. We can really lend the muscle that a sports team has across its communication platforms, its sales and service platforms, its design and digital assets and marketing platforms.” Thank you to Mark Pannes and the Vancouver Whitecaps team for leading the way on this initiative, and thank you to everyone who purchased a facemask.


Just MLS spitballing here

Of course it’s all speculation, but why not have a little fun while we patiently wait for all this uncertainty to slowly recede? ESPN’s Taylor Twellman interviewed MLS commissioner Don Garber a little while back and shared some of the topics from that conversation in a segment on ESPN FC.

If there ends up being only a very short window in 2020 to fit in a season could we end up seeing a Champions League or World Cup style knock-out tournament format? Short, sweet, exciting. Or could this be an opportunity to synchronize the American soccer calendar with the western European calendar so that all the leagues play their seasons at the same time?

I know...winter. The German Bundesliga does take a winter break each season, could that work in North America? Clever scheduling of road matches for teams located in the north during the winter months might help along with some stadiums having a roof such as the Olympic Stadium in Quebec and BC Place in British Columbia, but finding solutions to the weather would be tricky at best. All we can do is wait and see. Until then the MLS has put their transfer window on pause.


Check out Cheers and Gloating in the CanPL

A fun behind-the-scenes look at supporters culture in the CPL Cheers and Gloating in the CanPL takes you on a ride through the days surrounding the inaugural CPL final between Hamilton’s Forge FC and Calgary’s Cavalry FC. There is lots of good footage of the Forge FC supporters, the Barton Street Battalion, doing their thing to rally behind their team while having a good time.

It’s good to see different mediums of creative art and culture emerge from these groups, and I hope there is much more to come. As the league grows and new teams enter in it will be interesting to watch supporter culture emerge in those regions too. Every region, every city and every neighborhood has something that makes it interesting and unique. The CPL is an opportunity to add the flavor of these communities to the beautiful game in Canada.


CanPL Simpsons is a Twitter gem

Do yourself a favor and head over to the CanPL Simpsons Twitter feed. Speaking of supporters culture creativity, lots of good stuff is going on there. Who would have thought that the Simpsons and CPL would go so well together? A regular dose of quirky humor related to what’s going on in the league that is worth your attention.