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  #1  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 3:02 AM
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Winnipeg Valour - CanPL

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https://www.bluebombers.com/soccer/

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New soccer league deserves a kick at success
By: Editorial
Posted: 05/22/2018 7:00 PM

The month of June has been eagerly anticipated by Manitoba soccer fans who pay rapt attention to the global spectacle that is the World Cup. In other next-month news, by the way, Winnipeg officials will announce details of a new professional soccer league.

The juxtaposition of the World Cup tournament beginning June 14, and a news conference planned for June 6 about the new Canadian Premier League, offers context to ponder the challenges and opportunities facing Winnipeg officials aiming to give professional soccer a toehold in Winnipeg.

To the surprise of no one who knows soccer, Canada is not among the 32 national teams competing for the World Cup. When it comes to the top international level of soccer, Canadians are great hockey players.

That said, soccer has eclipsed hockey as a participation sport in Canada in the past generation. It’s the most popular youth sport in Winnipeg, with 27,000 enrolments in the Winnipeg Youth Soccer Association alone.

The big question, however, is this: will the burgeoning interest in playing soccer translate into fans willing to pay to support a pro team?

Winnipeg’s pro soccer team will play in the CPL, a Tier 1, FIFA-sanctioned soccer association that hopes to kick off its first season next spring. It will include up to 10 teams from cities throughout the country, although participation is unlikely from Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal, which already compete against U.S. soccer teams on the professional Major League Soccer circuit.

Details of Winnipeg’s entry, including the name of the team and the price of tickets, will be announced soon by Wade Miller, president and CEO of the Winnipeg Football Club, which will run the new team and also runs the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian Football League.

Mr. Miller is surely aware soccer was not an easy sell in 1992, when this city’s last professional soccer team, the Winnipeg Fury, and its league folded after six seasons. Paid attendance was sometimes as low as 2,000, and team travel costs are always high in a country in which major cities are far-flung.

But the sports scene in Winnipeg has changed considerably in the past 25 years, and there is reason for optimism that Winnipeg’s fourth professional sports team could be financially stable.

Attendance at pro soccer games might be bolstered by Winnipeg’s incoming stream of immigrants from countries where soccer is paramount, and by the soaring number of recreational soccer players who have grown up with the game and might pay to watch it played at a high level.

The new team will have the advantage of administration that is experienced in successful pro-sports management. These are the same people who led the Blue Bombers to an overall operating profit of $5.1 million in 2017. They know how to attract sponsors, and how to find innovative ways to increase revenue.

Many sports buffs will attend an initial game to check out Winnipeg’s new professional team. They won’t expect World Cup-level play, but they will want skilled soccer. They will also want an exciting environment, which is important to modern fans. Successful sports franchises connect with fans pre-game and post-game, entertain them, enlist their participation and build relationships.

That’s the dual challenge facing the Winnipeg Football Club. Convincing fans to come back after their first game will depend on the quality of the soccer, certainly, but it will also depend on whether fans feel engaged by the experience surrounding the action on the pitch.
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  #2  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 1:13 PM
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How does this ,or will it, interact with MLS? Isn't MLS basically the premier league in North America? I'll bet they'd merge at some point if the premier league is a success.
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  #3  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 1:52 PM
Ale_Hawerchuk Ale_Hawerchuk is offline
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  #4  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 1:54 PM
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Interesting colour choices - I thought they'd try to tie in to the Bomber's scheme a bit. Maybe the gold is a nod to that. Hamilton may have something to say about Winnipeg stealing the black and gold - the announcement for the Hamilton team is also expected soon.

Don't mind the name at all.
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  #5  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 1:57 PM
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^ I wouldn't expect them to merge... MLS has become the de facto top flight league in North America, while the CPL has its sights set on smaller Canadian markets not represented in MLS. As I understand it, the relationship between the two is roughly analogous to the NHL and AHL.

That said, CPL teams will compete with other Canadian pro teams including the MLS clubs for the Canadian championship.

The name sounds good to me but I'm not that crazy about the crest/colours.
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  #6  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 2:31 PM
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^ Yeah, there would be a chance that Winnipeg could play one of the MLS teams in a later round of the Canadian Championship (Voyageurs Cup). Same idea as the FA Cup in England, where the lower tier(s)/league(s) and their teams get a chance to compete against the big Premiere League clubs each year.

I read someone this morning that said the crest looked like a craft beer label.
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  #7  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 2:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by esquire View Post
^ I wouldn't expect them to merge... MLS has become the de facto top flight league in North America, while the CPL has its sights set on smaller Canadian markets not represented in MLS. As I understand it, the relationship between the two is roughly analogous to the NHL and AHL.

That said, CPL teams will compete with other Canadian pro teams including the MLS clubs for the Canadian championship.

The name sounds good to me but I'm not that crazy about the crest/colours.
There won't (I guess never say never, but highly unlikely) be a merge at any point.

The CPL will be considered, in the global soccer pyramid, as the same level or tier as MLS, LigaMX, EPL, Serie A, La Liga, etc. This obviously doesn't mean the level of talent is the same in all these leagues, but rather they are all classified at the same tier.

MLS is the top tier league of the USA, which just happens to include 3 Canadian franchises. This was mainly due to a lack of a premier level league in Canada to begin with. North America (Canada, Mexico and the USA), will now appropriately have top tier leagues in all nations; LigaMX, MLS, and the CPL. The CPL teams will also have an opportunity to qualify for the Concacaf Champions League.

That being said, it will be years before the level of competition in the CPL is on par with with the MLS and/or LigaMX. Only now are some of the top teams in the MLS at a comparable level with teams in LigaMX and the MLS has been around since 1996. However, this can and will work as there is a huge ground-roots movement in Canada right now regarding soccer. The youth talent has never been better in this country or more plentiful in terms of shear numbers playing the game as their PRIMARY sport. This league survives with smart ownership and league leadership (looks to be handled already), as well as community support.

As a fan and competitor of the beautiful game, I can't wait for the league to kick-off. I'll be getting a couple season tickets and I hope many in Winnipeg do the same.
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  #8  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 2:51 PM
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Also looking forward to getting tickets. Proudly wearing my Support Local Soccer - CanPL t-shirt today.

By the way, there is a fledgling supporters group for the Winnipeg club already set up.


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/752234381607635/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/RedRiverRising2
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  #9  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 3:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EndoftheBeginning View Post
I read someone this morning that said the crest looked like a craft beer label.
That kind of subdued hipster-chic seems to be the dominant aesthetic of North American soccer generally.

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Originally Posted by blue4life View Post
There won't (I guess never say never, but highly unlikely) be a merge at any point.

The CPL will be considered, in the global soccer pyramid, as the same level or tier as MLS, LigaMX, EPL, Serie A, La Liga, etc. This obviously doesn't mean the level of talent is the same in all these leagues, but rather they are all classified at the same tier.
Yeah, in a formal sense the CPL will be Canada's premier league but in reality I would expect it to be aligned much more closely with the USL than with MLS.

However, in some respects it's a little sad that rather than acting as the flagships for the CPL, that Canada's three largest cities will remain attached to what is essentially an American league.
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  #10  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 3:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bomberjet View Post
How does this ,or will it, interact with MLS? Isn't MLS basically the premier league in North America? I'll bet they'd merge at some point if the premier league is a success.
They're saying they're a tier 1 league which would be on level with the MLS (USL and former NASL were tier 2).

Merger with MLS seems unlikely since the CPL's ultimate goal is to create a European style club system complete with promotion and relegation. Also this is considered a Canadian development league so there will be a Canadian quota for players, something the MLS lacks for Canadian teams.
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  #11  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 3:52 PM
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Logo reminds me of a mix of




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  #12  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 8:19 PM
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Summary of emblem design below, from http://valourfc.canpl.ca/video/valour-fc-emblem-story

Quote:

The Valour FC emblem symbolises the valour shown in the story of three Winnipeg soldiers. Men who demonstrated immense bravery, courage and heroism during the First World War.

The ‘V’ on our crest emulates the folded ribbon of valour, and the circle below the ‘V’ is the shape of the medal itself.

The emblems ‘V’ shape also mirrors the merging of the two rivers, with the three lines signifying the Red River, and the two lines representing the Assiniboine River. The Forks, so named because of its position, has a rich history of early Aboriginal settlement, the fur trade, the arrival of the railway, waves of immigration and the industrial age. Today, it’s a vibrant downtown Winnipeg public space where people gather for celebrations, recreation and events. With over four million visitors each year, The Forks is the city’s most popular tourist destination.

The right side of the ‘V’ is for valour and the ‘W’ is for Winnipeg, a nod to people who are tough, hard-working and honest, they are also among the most generous in the country. It’s also a salute to the Blue Bombers. The storied Canadian Football League team formed in 1930 holds a truly unique place in Manitoba history as a catalyst for drawing people together with a common interest and passion.

The emblem design is clean, modern and exemplifies the city’s soccer history by using parts of former crests. A rich soccer history that dates to the creation of the Manitoba Soccer Association in 1896; Canada’s oldest provincial soccer association. The Norwood Wanderers won the first two National Championships in 1913 and 1914.

The maroon circle is a medal that was given to the three Winnipeg soldiers for their valour. In addition, the arc of wheat at the top of the crest exemplifies the thriving agriculture industry that has been part of the province and has grown into an iconic Manitoban symbol.

The striking swatch is a nod to the heroic story of three Winnipeg soldiers. Corporal Leo Clarke, Sergeant-Major Frederick William Hall, and Lieutenant Robert Shankland were awarded the Victoria Cross for their acts of bravery, courage and valour in World War I. The ribbon from which their medals hung is the deep maroon of Valour FC’s identity.

The inspiration in the golden tone comes from the prairies expansive wheat fields and the Golden Boy standing atop the Manitoba Legislative Building. A statue sculpted in France in 1918, but was taken on a detour as its cargo ship was taken for use in World War I. The torch in its hand is a call to the youth of the region to join in his pursuit of a prosperous future.

The third and final palette is our Earth Black, which comes from the black soil that grows the Golden wheat.

For Valour, for Winnipeg.
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  #13  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 8:32 PM
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I love the name, logo is pretty good, like the gold but hate that it's red instead of gold. Our city colours are blue and gold, and considering this team is being run by the Winnipeg Football Club (Bombers), I'm shocked they didn't go with blue & gold.

When they were first developing this league years ago, the original plan was to only go into non-CFL and non-MLS markets, and be a pretty "minor" league. As they went on CPL, along with FIFA, realized there was a much bigger market than they anticipated, and changed their plan. Halifax, York, and Victoria (Port City) were all in the original discussions, which is why they're here now. It will be interesting to see how many CFL teams work with or run these soccer teams. AFAIK the Bombers are the only one that actually own their CPL team (so far). Halifax will go from zero to two "Canadian major league" teams by 2020.

This is considered a Tier 1 FIFA league. CPL is structured like every soccer league in the world as a club-based league except MLS, which is franchise-based. This means that the league doesn't own the clubs, and clubs can technically move around between leagues based on a number of factors.

If MLS was club-based like all the others, a team from CPL could easily move up if warranted, but for that to happen in current structures, a team would need to prove it's profitable enough to buy a franchise license from MLS – very unlikely in the next decade. CPL, like CFL, will have roster minimums for Canadian talent (apparently 75%). MLS requires I believe 51% of their teams to be American players – including the Canadian teams, as it's an American league. There's rumours going around that MLS is looking at changing this rule for the Canadian teams.
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  #14  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 8:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Ale_Hawerchuk View Post
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The logo isn't too bad. I wonder if they'll just have a corporate logo emblazoned upon their chest anyway like Toronto and Montreal have BMO.
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Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 8:45 PM
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^ Last I heard, Hamilton's team is going to be owned by the same guy who owns the Ticats, so at least two CPL clubs will be related to local CFL teams. Of course, Toronto and Ottawa's football and soccer teams already have the same owners.
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  #16  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 8:46 PM
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$50 deposit on season tickets will be accepted starting Friday, June 8.

The Valour FC web site is now live. All the branding and corporate type stuff for the league looks very professional and polished, in terms of the web presence, videos, graphics, etc. If the substance of the league product can back up the initial style presented to the public, they will do OK.
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  #17  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 8:47 PM
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The logo isn't too bad. I wonder if they'll just have a corporate logo emblazoned upon their chest anyway like Toronto and Montreal have BMO.
I think that's a given, that's how it's done in soccer.

While I appreciate the overall look they're going for, the logo itself stinks IMO. I don't know why sports teams in Winnipeg like to default to military imagery so much. We have a fairly minor military presence but we act like it's our defining identity as far as sports teams go. Hopefully the jerseys are better.
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  #18  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 9:07 PM
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Neither the origins of the jets or bombers were military related, jets inspiration came from new york jets and bombers inspiration came from the Joe Louis nickname the "Brown Bomber".

Last edited by WpG_GuY; Jun 6, 2018 at 9:20 PM.
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  #19  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 9:15 PM
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Either the origins of the jets or bombers were military related, jets inspiration came from new york jets and bombers inspiration came from the Joe Louis nickname the "Brown Bomber".
Look at the Jets logo and the military imagery they use. The Bombers have tied themselves to the military more and more in recent years (flyovers, military recognition), although in their case it's more of a league-wide thing.

I dunno, I just not feeling it. How relevant is all that to the average Winnipegger?
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  #20  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2018, 10:08 PM
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Originally Posted by EndoftheBeginning View Post
Interesting colour choices - I thought they'd try to tie in to the Bomber's scheme a bit. Maybe the gold is a nod to that. Hamilton may have something to say about Winnipeg stealing the black and gold - the announcement for the Hamilton team is also expected soon.

Don't mind the name at all.
Not too sure if the colours will be an issue with Hamilton. Winnipeg's other teams (Jets, Bombers and Goldeyes) all have different colour schemes from one another. Calgary's team - Calvary FC - will be going with predominantly green (with red and black) as their colour which is traditionally the colour we associate with Saskatchewan.
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