Northern Exposure: Your Weekly Canada Soccer Wrap Up
MLS is Back Tournament coming soon
Unless you’ve been living under a rock you probably already know about the MLS is Back Tournament starting on July 8 at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. All 26 teams will take part in this tournament which will offer a safe and controlled environment for the players.
As far as the Canadian teams taking part, the 401 Derby will be renewed between Toronto FC and the Montreal Impact when they meet each other in Group C. They will be accompanied by DC United and the New England Revolution who round out the group. The Vancouver Whitecaps find themselves in Group B along with Cascadia rivals Seattle Sounders. FC Dallas and the San Jose Earthquakes make up the other two teams in the group.
The group stage is set to begin on July 8 with the round of 16 to be played between July 25-28. The quarterfinals are scheduled for July 30-Aug 1 with the semifinals set to go on Aug 5 and 6. The final will take place on Aug 11. The winner of the tournament will receive an automatic birth into the 2021 Concacaf Champions League Tournament.
Canada Soccer announces Canadian Championship plan
The Canadian Championship was originally scheduled to begin on June 16 but due to COVID-19 the tournament had been postponed. Canada Soccer recently announced the updates to the 2020 version of the tournament which will include 11 teams in total. So far no dates have been announced for this updated version of the tournament.
In the original version of this year’s tournament the three Canadian MLS teams and the CanPL teams were set to compete alongside AS Blainville from the PLSQ and Toronto Master’s FA from League 1 Ontario. Due to the circumstances with the pandemic the tournament has been adjusted so that only the MLS and CanPL teams will take part. AS Blainville and Toronto Master’s FA will be moved into the 2021 edition of the tournament.
NWSL Challenge Cup almost here
The National Women’s Soccer League is set to kick off the Challenge Cup which will take place in Utah starting June 27. The tournament’s opening match will be between the league’s two most dominant teams, the North Carolina Courage and Portland Thorns FC. Canadian Women’s National Team star Christine Sinclair plays for Portland although it remains to be seen which players will take part in the tournament. The opening match of this tournament will be the first time professional women’s club soccer will be seen live on a national broadcast network in the United States.
.@TheNCCourage and @ThornsFC kickstart the #ChallengeCup on @CBS, @CBSAllAccess, and @Twitch on June 27 at 12:30 ET.— NWSL (@NWSL) June 16, 2020
Full slate of broadcast times for the tournament: https://t.co/ksLsCP9lhD#NWSL pic.twitter.com/wWX21XB9PF
FC Bayern’s Alphonso Davies named Bundesliga Rookie of the Season
Young Canadian phenom Alphonso Davies just continues to rack up the accolades, most recently picking up the Bundesliga Rookie of the Year award. The FC Bayern Munich left-back beat out Borrussia Dortmund’s Erling Haaland among others to claim the award. In his last outing, one that was cut short as a result of receiving a red card, Davies would break the league’s speed record, traveling at 36.5 km/h as Bayern would go on to secure the league title—Davies’ second. It’s been quite the month for the 19-year-old as we’ll have more on him in the coming days.
Anniversary of Canada receiving the 2026 World Cup
It’s hard to believe that it has already been two years since Canada was granted the 2026 World Cup alongside Mexico and the United States as part of the United 2026 bid. In recognition of this anniversary the host of the Canada Soccer Nation Podcast Jason deVos had a round table discussion with FIFA Vice President and Concacaf President Victor Montagliani, Canada Soccer President Steve Reed, and Canada Soccer General Secretary Peter Montopoli.
United2026 anniversary pod is now LIVE@jasondevos is joined by @FIFAcom Vice President, @Concacaf President @VicMontagliani, @CanadaSoccerPO and General Secretary Peter Montopoli to discuss the two-year anniversary of the granting the 2026 @FIFAWorldCuphttps://t.co/grscirNddN pic.twitter.com/J9VaJqfDbO— Canada Soccer (@CanadaSoccerEN) June 12, 2020
CanPL celebrates National Indigenous Peoples Day
Sunday June 21 is National Indigenous People’s Day. The Canadian Premier League is actively acknowledging and promoting this day which is really good to see. So far the CanPL has done well to incorporate the symbolism of indigenous communities into the league. An example of this was the 2019 individual awards which included unique pieces of Inuit art soapstone carved by artists from Kinngait (Cape Dorset), Nunavut. Unlike any other trophies in soccer these awards are uniquely Canadian.