Canada Soccer

Canadian Soccer League holds kick-off event

Posted on 12 May 2009 in Around the Soccer World

With the pre-season out of the way, the Canadian Soccer Association held its official kick-off event at BMO Field in Toronto. The event counts down the final few days before the official opening match this Friday 15 May at Maple Stadium between Italia Shooters and Attak de Trois-Rivières.

In all, there will be 90 regular-season matches between the 10 teams and 14 additional playoff matches between the eight teams that advance. The regular season runs four months, spanning from the opening 15 May date to the final 20 September date. The playoffs stretch the schedule into a fifth month, concluding with the championship in late October.

In 2009, the National Division features Brampton Lions FC, London City, North York Astros, St. Catharines Wolves, TFC Academy and Attak de Trois-Rivières; the International Division features Italia Shooters, Portugal FC, Serbian White Eagles and Toronto Croatia. One game will be broadcast every Saturday on Rogers television.

The top eight teams, regardless of division, proceed to the playoffs. The quarter-final and semi-final stages are all two-game legs; the final is a one-match championship finale (date and location TBA). Toronto’s Serbia White Eagles, who play their home matches at Centennial Stadium, are the reigning playoff champions.

Along with 2009 plans, the league also talked about its aspirations for future expansion. Just last week at the Canadian Soccer Association’s annual general meeting, the Canadian Soccer League was granted conditional membership beginning in 2010 with the strict condition that the league meets the Association’s approval of criteria set by the professional and technical committees. National affiliation, of course, will help the league expand beyond Ontario and Québec, most notably to the west where the league eyes a potential six-team division.

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