A local, professional soccer club will kick off its season as part of the brand new Canadian Premier League launching in late April.
The Pacific Football Club will represent Vancouver Island in this seven-club league, which includes teams based in Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, Hamilton, Toronto, and Halifax — making it the first true coast-to-coast sports league in Canada.
Pacific FC will play out of the Westhills Stadium in Langford, which is being renovated to expand its capacity from 1,500 to 6,000 with a brand new grandstand that will feature a supporter section and a family zone at the other end. The highway side will be a craft beer section, which should definitely excite local soccer fans and craft beer lovers alike.
Leading the ownership team for Pacific FC is Team President Josh Simpson, who grew up on Vancouver Island. As a youngster, he played in the Juan de Fuca Soccer Association. Later, he played for Canada’s national team, and played professionally in the US and Europe. When the opportunity to help launch the Canadian Premier League arose, the idea of providing future local pros with a Vancouver Island option was too compelling for Simpson to pass up.
As the only pro sports team on the Island, Pacific FC is committed to grassroots and local connections, and will work closely with local soccer associations to provide soccer clinics up and down the Island and encourage kids to follow their soccer dreams.
“We want to recognize all the amazing work that the local soccer clubs and communities are already doing to develop young players and what they have done to elevate soccer in this region,” says Simpson. “Our goal is to give young kids an opportunity to stay in BC and realize their professional dreams here.”
The CPL launches on April 27 in Hamilton with a match between Hamilton and York. Pacific FC’s home opener is scheduled for Sunday, April 28. The season will be divided into two halves, with the winner of the spring season given the opportunity to host the championship match versus the winner of the fall season in mid-October.
As of mid-February, Pacific FC’s roster was not finalized, but it is sure to include a mix of players from British Columbia, the rest of Canada, and abroad. It will be exciting to watch these young men come together as a team to challenge for the first ever Canadian Premier League championship!
Canadian Premier League Teams:
- Cavalry FC (Spruce Meadows, AB)
- FC Edmonton (Edmonton, AB)
- Forge FC (Hamilton ON)
- HFX Wanderers FC (Halifax, NS)
- Pacific FC (Victoria BC)
- Valour FC (Winnipeg MB)
- York 9 FC (Toronto ON)