Cavalry FC to shift February Champions Cup game to Vancouver Island to escape cold

Click to play video: 'Calgary’s Cavalry FC awarded trophy after Canadian Premier League win'
Calgary’s Cavalry FC awarded trophy after Canadian Premier League win
Cavalry FC won their final match of the regular season of the Canadian Premier League on Saturday afternoon. The Calgary team was officially awarded the Winner's Shield, while also securing their spot on the 2024 Concacaf Champions Cup. – Oct 7, 2023

Cavalry FC is moving its first-round CONCACAF Champions Cup game in February to Starlight Stadium in Langford, B.C., to escape the Alberta cold.

The Calgary-based team, which qualified for CONCACAF’s elite club championship by finishing first in the Canadian Premier League regular season, hosts MLS side Orlando City SC in the opening round of the 27-team CONCACAF competition.

“As the northernmost club in CONCACAF, we are acutely aware of the possible risks that playing in February on natural grass may pose,” Cavalry president Ian Allison said in a statement. “We are, after all, more than 51 degrees north of the southernmost of the 41 members of CONCACAF. Despite the unseasonably mild start we have had to western Canadian winter, the frost is already quite deep in the sub-surface of our pitch.

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“As such, we are looking at ways to mitigate any risks by playing our first-round match at an alternative CONCACAF-approved venue.”

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Starlight Stadium, which has a capacity of some 6,000, is home to the CPL’s Pacific FC.

Hamilton’s Forge FC, the reigning CPL champion, was drawn Wednesday against Mexico’s Chivas Guadalajara while the Vancouver Whitecaps will face Mexico’s Tigres UANL.

Forge plans to play its home half of the two-legged first-round series at Tim Hortons Field. CONCACAF has yet to announce exact dates for the matches.

Click to play video: 'Finding a new home with Cavalry FC'
Finding a new home with Cavalry FC

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