Canada Soccer Suspends All Soccer Activities, CPL Suspends Preseason
Canada Soccer has suspended all sanctioned soccer activities with immediate effect, meaning that as of right now all domestic league and national team activity is suspended without timeline for resumption. This means that every league which calls Canada home – including the CPL and League1 Ontario, as well as amateur and youth clubs – cannot play or train until the suspension is lifted.
All scheduled national team activity is also cancelled, which includes the men’s national team friendlies in Westhills Stadium and the Men’s Olympic Qualifiers which were already postponed by Concacaf.
As we reported it would yesterday, the COVID-19 pandemic has also significantly impacted the Canadian Premier League preseason, with the league having earlier announced the immediate suspension of all preseason training activities for the next 14 days.
Given the extraordinary nature of the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation and after close dialogue with our membership and public health authorities, Canada Soccer has taken the necessary decision to suspend all domestic soccer activity as well as National Team programming to ensure the well being of all involved.Steven Reed, Canada Soccer President
The league – which has been monitoring the COVID-19 situation closely – made the decision to halt preseason after input from medical experts and health officials to ensure a safe environment for the burgeoning league’s teams.
Clubs like York9 FC – who are currently in the midst of a Florida-based preseason camp – will be returning to Canada as soon as the York Region side can procure flights home for its players and staff. Similar, the Atletico Ottawa squad is expected to halt its Madrid-based preseason and return to Canada in the near future.
The Canadian Premier League has promised to update fans as more information becomes available. There’s high potential that the league will reschedule or postpone matches as the currently-scheduled start of the season, April 11, approaches. With Canada Soccer not putting a timeline on its suspension of all activities, only time will tell how things look a few weeks from now.
With other leagues like Major League Soccer, The Premier League, Serie A, and La Liga all suspended for the time being, stopping training and professional play seems to be the standard recommended by health experts across the globe as each nation attempts to limit the spread of COVID-19 through means of isolation and screenings where appropriate.
Over 153 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in Canada, with 19 more positive cases being confirmed in Ontario today alone. Health Canada expects the numbers to rise, with provinces beginning to open COVID-19 assessment centres to relieve stress from hospital emergency rooms while reducing COVID-19’s exposure to the public.
To that end, both British Columbia and Alberta have limited mass gatherings to 250 people. We here at Northern Tribune wish all fans, spectators, players, and staff good health as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the lives of everyone across the globe.
Source: Canada Soccer