The Canadian Premier League Transfer Window Is Closed
Blink and you’ll miss it: the deadline day for the spring season transfer window has quietly passed.
As the spring season of the Canadian Premier League gets underway, Canadian fans are still getting acclimated to having a professional domestic league. There are still a few administrative features that the league hasn’t explicitly confirmed, and one of them was how long clubs have to sign players for the spring season.
While FIFA had listed the Canadian deadline as May 7, the league itself had never really mentioned the official closure of the spring season transfer window.
As a quiet byline by Valour FC reveals, that deadline indeed passed on May 7, with the Winnipeg side closing out the transfer window with a deadline day signing of Marco Bustos. Valour FC was the only club to make a signing on the final day of the transfer window.
This means that some expected signings like Jace Kotsopoulos and Shun Takano may not came to fruition, despite the former stating he was just awaiting paperwork and the latter taking part of the club’s preseason media day in Punta Cana. As unattached players, however, they may still be able to sign on even with the transfer window closed, depending on how the league handles squad registration.
It also means that the Canadian Premier League has a deadline day that ties in with Major League Soccer, which seems to be a pretty sensible decision given the loan relationships being established.
Of course, it’s possible the players have been signed ahead of the deadline without announcement. York9 signed Jose Pina ahead of the Punta Cana preseason, though the player didn’t appear on the roster for weeks and the club never made a formal announcement regarding his signing.
Here’s how the squad depth is looking across the Canadian Premier League rosters right now:
Cavalry FC: 23 players (2GK, 6DF, 8MF, 7 FW)
FC Edmonton: 22 Players (2GK, 6DF, 7MF, 7FW)
Forge FC: 20 Players (2GK, 6DF, 7MF, 5FW)
Halifax Wanderers: 23 Players (2GK, 8DF, 7MF, 6 FW)
Pacific FC: 20 Players (2GK, 7DF, 8 MF, 3 FW)
Valour FC: 22 Players (2GK, 6DF, 8MF, 6 FW
York9 FC: 23 Players (3 GK, 8 DF, 7 MF, 5 FW)
With a maximum roster of 23 players, each club’s depth will likely be tested as the season wears on. Canadian Premier League clubs must feature at least six Canadians in their Starting 11. Three of the 23-man roster must be domestic U-21 players, who need a cumulative 1,000 minutes of play across the season.
It’s not current known what punishment would be handed down if a club fails to clock in these minutes, as unlikely as such an event seems. That being said, before Kyle Bekker was given a multi-game suspension yesterday, fans were also confused as to whether a disciplinary committee even existed for the league – so it might be a good idea for CPL officials to talk specifics regarding these kind of issues. For example, it’s not known how many yellow cards it takes for a player to receive an automatic one game suspension, or whether than ban will apply across different domestic competitions.
In any event, it’s a tremendously exciting time for fans of Canadian soccer. Each club had crafted a roster to meet its own unique goals, and each side is starting to have its own identity on the pitch. With the spring season rosters apparently set in stone (barring any free agent transfers), it’s time to see who did it best.
Following FIFA standards, the fall season transfer window is expected to open on July 7, 2019, just a few days after the spring season comes to a close on Canada Day. The transfer window will then run until August 7, 2019.
Source: Valour FC
Unattached players aren’t subject to deadline days; they’re about transferring rights from one team to another. So if a player is unattached they can be signed at any time. That’s the norm in most leagues, including MLS.