April 16, 2024
  • April 16, 2024
Pacific FC Manny Aparicio Goal

‘The Team Is Not For Sale’: Pacific Ownership Rebukes Claim That CPL Club Is On The Market

By on April 1, 2024 0 2747 Views

Last night saw a bombshell tweet from Manuel Veth claim that both Pacific FC and Valour FC were on the market for new owners, prompting plenty of fan speculation regarding the future of the two Canadian Premier League sides.

However, sources from both clubs and the league itself have rebuked those claims in conversations with Northern Tribune.

“We remain very committed to the Island and the team is not for sale. Further, there would be a formal process around that kind of exercise for us, and there currently is no sales process happening,” said Pacific FC co-owner Dean Shillington. “Instead, we are focused on the season ahead and look forward to kicking our sixth season off at home on the thirteenth against the Wanderers.”

A trusted league source informed us there had been no indication that either club was planning to shop themselves on the open marketplace, describing Veth’s claims as speculation.

Shillington did add that the ownership group is always working with the league to find good owners to join in the expansion and growth of Canadian soccer, though he wasn’t sure where the rumours of Pacific’s own sale intentions stemmed from.

Pacific FC Emil Gazdov 2023
Photo Credit: Canadian Premier League

SixFive Sports and Entertainment runs a multi-club ownership model within the Canadian Premier League, owning both Pacific FC on Vancouver Isle and expansion club Vancouver FC on the lower mainland. Shillington confirmed that the group remains ‘fully committed’ to the multi-club ownership model it has established.

Pacific ownership had recently faced rumours that the club was intending to leave the City of Langford, though those ended up stemming from conversations held with neighbouring municipalities about backup plans in case the club’s lease at Starlight Stadium was not renewed. Both the club and the City of Langford stated they were both committed to that lease’s renewal, however.

Valour FC Phillip Dos Santos
Photo Credit: John Jacques

Winnipeg’s Valour FC – the other side rumoured to be on the market – is perhaps more used to being a frequent lightning rod for criticism: owned by Winnipeg Football Group, the team has yet to match its inaugural season attendance numbers, though clubrunner Wade Miller reiterated to the Winnipeg Free Press last October that the club was still firmly committed to running the Canadian Premier League franchise.

“We’re running it, and we’re going to find a way to make this work for our fans, for our players, and for this city,” Miller had said in the fall. “We love having Valour. We see what’s happening with soccer in this country, and Valour needs to be in Winnipeg. We’re gonna work hard to make that happen.”

York United Owners Pasquel Family
Photo Credit: David Chant

Last season saw York United undergo an ownership change in a process that lasted all season long, with the Baldassarra family selling the team to the league, who then found a new ownership group in the Pasquel brothers. The financial details of the sale were not disclosed.

It marked the second time the league had taken reigns of a CPL side, with the league office having tried to do the same with a cash-strapped FC Edmonton in 2022 – however, CPL commissioner Mark Noonan opted to fold the club instead, stating it was best for the league to return to the city under a new and sustainable venture in the future.

Given that Manuel Veth has proven a reliable source for Pacific FC news in the past, it’s no shock that the tweet has picked up plenty of steam online. For now, however, both club ownership and league sources have firmly denied that Pacific FC has been put up for sale.

Pacific FC will kick off its sixth season against coastal rivals Halifax Wanderers on April 13.

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