WINNIPEG — As a key player behind Manitoba’s first professional soccer club, Ralph Cantafio has seen the province’s passion for football. A desire that still lives 24 years after the Winnipeg Fury folded.
“Even today, people come up to me and say they wish they had the Fury,” Cantafio said. “It’s nice to have something like the Fury.”
The Winnipeg Football Club is hoping to bring back the beautiful game. The owner of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers is a founding member of the newly created Canadian Premier League. Winnipeg’s soccer team will play its home games at Investors Group Field.
“We talk a lot about how to better utilize the stadium,” Winnipeg Football Club Board of Directors vice chair Dayna Spiring said.
“The more times we can have that stadium used, the more economic development we’re going to create.”
The only other confirmed team will be based in Hamilton however the league has heard from 10 cities interested in joining. It’s goal is to be sanctioned by FIFA at the highest level.
“Right now, a four or five year old who starts playing soccer has an attainable dream to play for his local city,” Manitoba Soccer Association technical director Mike Vitulano said.
The Canadian Premier League hopes to kick off fall 2018.