Edmonton expected to join new Canadian soccer league
Canadian Premier League hints at the news in social media video
A video released on social media Tuesday by the Canadian Premier League has kicked up the interest of Edmonton soccer fans.
The video suggests that an Edmonton team will be joining Canada's new professional soccer league, set to begin play next year.
Though no specifics about the team have been released, the Canadian Premier League (CPL) is inviting soccer fans to join them for a "special unveiling" Friday evening, in front of the Old Strathcona Farmers Market.
"We're planting the seeds for the future of professional soccer in Canada," reads the invite from the CPL.
Welcome City of Edmonton. We Are Many, We Are One. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/CanPL?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#CanPL</a> <a href="https://t.co/TOn4EdlnBb">pic.twitter.com/TOn4EdlnBb</a>—@CPLsoccer
Local soccer fans who have pushing for FC Edmonton to join the CPL told CBC News that the release of the promotional video is a very promising sign. FC Edmonton played in the North American Soccer League (NASL) for seven seasons but the club ceased operations last year.
"It's very exciting," said Nathan Terlesky, with the YEG4CPL movement. "It's a very solid sign that the league shows that they're interested in the city."
It's not yet known if the new team will be branded as FC Edmonton or if the team will use the same colours. The former owners of FC Edmonton have publicly expressed interest in joining the new league.
Similar videos were released before the league introduced three other clubs, including Calgary's Cavalry FC.
A rivalry between Calgary and Edmonton would be great for the new league and the sport, said Terlesky.FC Edmonton's Academy faced Calgary Foothills FC in a game last month.
"The game against Calgary really demonstrated the desire for relatively close road trips, as well as regional rivalries," he said.
CPL plans to announce eight to ten teams for its inaugural season.
The issue of where the team will play will also have to be resolved.
FC Edmonton has asked for primary tenant status and naming rights at Clarke Stadium, but the Edmonton Eskimos opposed their request, saying they need access to the field for practices.