TWELVE CPSL TEAMS FOR 2005
Twelve teams, including a returning Laval Dynamites from Quebec which took a year off in 2004, together with a relocated Metro Lions with a new-look and under a new name, and Brampton Hitmen under new ownership and a yet-to-be-announced name change, will kickoff the Canadian Professional Soccer League�s new season the third week of May.
Laval Dynamites, with its refurbished and re-surfaced Bois-de-Bulogne Stadium in this community just west of Montreal, will be the most easterly team in the CPSL, while Border Stars, having completed a highly successful inaugural season in the American Indoor Soccer League (AISL), will be to the extreme southwest at Windsor.
Metro Lions have relocated to Oakville, just west of Toronto, to play out of Bronte Stadium on the north side of the Queen Elizabeth Way under the name of the Oakville Blue Devils and Brampton Hitmen are about to announce a name change under new ownership.
Electrical contractor Joe Fuliere has purchased the franchise from previous owner Steve Nijjar, who launched Brampton�s first professional soccer club three years ago and won the CPSL Championship in 2003. Hector Marinaro Sr., team manager of the previous Brampton Hitmen, has been appointed general manager.
The Open Canada Cup will be an important feature of the 2005 CPSL season, to play a Preliminary Round during the Victoria Day long weekend, May 21 to 23, with the Second Round during the Canada Day long weekend July 1 to 3. The Third Round will be played during the Civic Holiday long weekend July 30, 31 and August 1 with the final weekend September 3 to 5.
The CPSL is expected also, to announce details soon of a first step into Women�s soccer, a Canada Cup tournament in conjunction with those district associations in which a CPSL franchise exists.
The league season will kickoff the third week in May and a feature of the early games will be the Vaughan Shooters opener on May 29 against Toronto Croatia, a re-match of the CPSL Championship Final game won by Croatia last October 11. This is a particularly important event due to its billing in the GTA as a fund-raiser for the Princess Margaret Hospital�s breast cancer research.
Teams for 2005 are Border Stars, Brampton, Durham Storm, Hamilton Thunder, Laval Dynamites, London City, North York Astros, Oakville Blue Devils, St. Catharines Roma Wolves, Toronto Croatia, Toronto Supra and Vaughan Shooters. The 12 teams will again be in a league formation of two conferences, east and west.
A pre-season press conference is planned for mid-May.