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2021 CanPL season to kick off this summer at one location with no fans

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Canadian Premier League Commissioner David Clanachan has provided an update on the status of the league’s 2021 return-to-play plan

CPL: HFX Wanderers FC at Pacific FC
Warm up balls sit on the pitch before the start of the first half during a Canadian Premier League soccer match at Westhills Stadium.
(Sorvin/USA TODAY Sports)

TORONTO, Canada—The Canadian Premier League is planning to start their 2021 season in mid-June to early July according to league Commissioner David Clanachan in an update provided Friday afternoon.

“We continue to move forward with our plans for a full 2021 season with the strong support of our club owners and are working non-stop with several locations creating options to begin our season,” said Clanachan in a statement released by the league.

As suspected, the league plans to start the season in one location with all eight clubs—without fans in the stands. At this time, it is unclear exactly where the league is leaning towards in terms of settling on a location.

Last season, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the CanPL was forced to host a month-long tournament, which also counted as their season, dubbed ‘The Island Games’ in Charlottetown, PEI. In the end, it was Forge FC once again emerging victorious for the second-straight year.

While the season will begin in a single-location like The Island Games, there is hope that htis campaign will feel more like a normal season, including the possibility of once again returning to home markets and playing in front of fans.

“Each CPL club will play 28 regular season games and we will follow a single table format that will provide fans with a more competitive season that creates more exciting matches right to the end of the season—including matches in our home markets potentially with Supporters and Fans cheering on their Clubs,” added Clanachan.

“As we continue to finalize our plans, we will keep you posted on our progress and look forward to announcing the start of our 2021 season.”