Football is the most played and followed sport in the world. Yet in North America it was still a step behind. For a short time. In both the United States and Canada, new football avenues have been opened up to capture the attention of spectators. We focus on the Canadian country.
With little history, but a lot of desire to build on it. That is how Canadian football is described. Year after year, places in the top division are expanding and new global talent is emerging and finding its way to the best teams in the world. We take the measure of the growth of football in Canada.
Canadian Premier League
The Canadian Premier League is the top division of Canadian football. It was founded in 2017, but its first season took place in 2019. Only three years of experience for a competition that has already colonised Canadian national television. The creation of this league responds to a demand from Canadian society for an official and professional competition.
Eight teams currently compete in the Canadian Premier League. They are York United FC, Valour FC, Pacific FC, HFX Wanderers FC, Forge FC, FC Edmonton, Cavalry FC and Atletico Ottawa. They cover the whole of Canada in a competition with an ever-growing following.
Format of the Canadian Premier League
The Canadian Premier League has a regular competition system. The eight teams play each other four times. Twice as home and twice as away against each opponent. A total of 28 rounds are played to determine which teams compete for the league title.
After the regular league, a play-off is played. The first-placed team advances directly to the final, while the second and third place teams play a preliminary round. The Canadian league champion plays in the CONCACAF Champions League. They advance directly to the round of 16 against other teams from Central and North America.
Other Canadian teams
The late creation of the Canadian Premier League meant that previously created Canadian clubs had to compete in the United States. This is the case of CF Montreal, Toronto FC and Vancouver Whitecaps. All of them continue to compete in MLS against US teams.
With the creation of the Canadian Premier League and the increase in the number of spectators, it is expected that all Canadian clubs will compete in this league and not leave for MLS. In the long term, the Canadian Premier League intends to expand the number of clubs in order to continue its expansion.
Spanish football and Canadian football
Spanish football and Canadian football have a link that unites them. Atletico Ottawa. The club founded in 2020 is an offshoot of Atlético de Madrid. They share similarities in the crest and have an almost identical kit. A Atlético’s bid for a growing market.
Spaniards at Ottawa Athletic
Atlético Ottawa is the workplace of three Spaniards. Two of them are footballers and one of them is the head coach. On the one hand, Viti Martínez adds his first Canadian experience after spells at Sabadell, Nàstic and Deportivo Alavés B. Also Miguel Acosta, who signed for the Canadian club after spells at Getafe CF and Atlético Baleares.
More popular is the coach of Atlético Ottawa: Miguel Ángel Ferrer Mista. The former Valencia CF, Atlético de Madrid and Deportivo de La Coruña player is enjoying his first step away from Spain. As a coach he managed the youth teams of Valencia and Atleti. In Ottawa he competes for the first time as head coach.
Canadian football players in Spain
The new generation of Canadians has grown up with powerful, globalised football. Children also want to play football, not just basketball, American football and ice hockey. Proof of this is the large number of young players coming to Spain in search of opportunities.
SIA Academy, an international football academy in Spain, has several Canadian players. They come to Soccer Inter-Action to develop their talent and have more opportunities than they have in Canada. It is the ideal place to propel their career and become a star in the Canadian Premier League.
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