Canadian Premier League Announces 2024 CPL-U SPORTS Draft
The annual Canadian Premier League – U SPORTS Draft is back.
The two-round draft will take place on Thursday, December 14 at 1:00PM, with all eight Canadian Premier League teams getting one selection in each of the two rounds. Broadcast details are set to come early next month.
With last year’s draft seeing seven of the sixteen selections going on to get significant experience throughout the year, there’ll be plenty of eyes on which U SPORTS underclassmen can secure selection for the league’s sixth season.
The order of selection is based on both regular season standings and playoff results as follows:
- Valour FC
- Vancouver FC
- Atletico Ottawa
- York United FC
- Halifax Wanderers FC
- Pacific FC
- Cavalry FC
- Forge FC
Unlike most other professional leagues, athletes selected in the CPL-U SPORTS draft aren’t guaranteed a contract: rather, they will be invited to trial with their respective sides in a bid for one. Last season saw the likes of Anthony White and Eryk Kobza turn professional, though not all first round picks got even a development deal.
Athletes signed to a U SPORTS Player Contract will retain their university sports eligibility provided they return to their respective school by August 15. Compensation earned throughout the season is provided in the form of tuition support.
With this year’s wooden spoon winners Valour up first and having promised a bigger focus on scouting, it’ll be interesting to see where the club aims to reinforce itself with youth talent. Last season saw them grab Guillaume Pianelli in the first round, and he went on to make 18 appearances for them.
The 2024 Canadian Premier League season will be the league’s sixth. After that, commissioner Mark Noonan aims to see it grow by two teams in 2025 and at least two more in 2026, which will grow the draft itself as well.
This also marks the first time the league has used imagery for the event which might simplify the name to ‘CPL Draft 2024’, which is certainly less of a mouthful than the Canadian Premier League – U SPORTS Draft.