Look out Whitecaps, another pro soccer league could be coming to town.
Canadian Premier League Soccer (CPL) is working with ownership groups to establish a new professional franchise in the Lower Mainland.
“We can confirm a group of local business leaders have submitted a proposal to the City of Surrey representing a future franchise in the Lower Mainland,” CPL spokesperson Greg McIsaac said in an email.
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“The proposal includes the potential development of a soccer-specific stadium. The group is also exploring other municipalities in the Fraser Valley concurrently.”
The specific terms of the formal proposal remain confidential.
The CPL launched its bid to create a FIFA-sanctioned Canadian pro soccer league back in May, when it earned the support of Canada Soccer.
The league is aiming for a 2018 kickoff, but as of yet, just two teams have been confirmed: Hamilton and Winnipeg.
Halifax city council has also given the green light to a new soccer stadium and up to 10 cities are said to be interested in joining.
The Canadian Premier League is envisioned as a professional domestic league that would offer a development pathway for young Canadian players to soccer’s highest levels.
It comes amid a string of successes for the Canadian women’s national team, including two Olympic medals and a quarter-final finish in the Women’s World Cup.
League organizers hope the CPL could offer a pathway to success for Canada’s men’s team, which has only earned a single berth in the World Cup.