HFX Wanderers FC return to home field, reward fans with victory

The last time fans cheered on the HFX Wanderers on home soil was in October 2019. The pandemic may have halted their thunderous chants but fans were back in full force and embraced torrential rain to welcome their professional soccer squad back.
Torrential rain didn’t stall the wave of energy that Halifax Canadian Premier League [CPL] fans have been building over the past 22 months.

“It’s like Christmas, 100 per cent,” Jerry Wurnig said, a HFX Wanderers FC fan that’s backed the team ever since the CPL announced it was coming to Halifax in 2018.

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What Wurnig and thousands of other fans didn’t anticipate was the nearly two-year stall of home-field games that followed the inaugural season.

“I think we’re all itching to get back,” he said, alongside fellow Wanderers fans at a local pub in Halifax.

Not only do Wanderers fans help fuel the local economy during home games by funneling in for pre-game cheer, but they also bring an electric atmosphere to downtown Halifax that rivals any other CPL location.

“In 2019 we led the league with our 90-plus-per cent capacity, at 6,200 people per game. The plan was always to be that we’d expand a little bit more each year,” Denton Froese said, another superfan known to parade through Halifax streets dressed in regalia.

Froese says ever since the pandemic pushed the 2020 season to a bubble played out of Prince Edward Island, there have been rumours about when home matches would return.

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He says fans rejoiced when the announcement finally came in July that games would start again in front of home crowds in Halifax.

“To finally just get something that you can peg on your calendar and say, ‘Now we’re doing this!’ It just made everything come alive,” Froese said.

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The HFX Wanderers notched a home crowd in with a 2-1 victory of Atlético Ottawa.

Click to play video: 'Paul models the new 2021 HFX Wanderers kit: Community Edition'
Paul models the new 2021 HFX Wanderers kit: Community Edition




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