Friday evening at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton will be significant for several reasons.
Alphonso Davies, the 21-year-old Bayern Munich star will be playing in his home city for the first time as a member of Canada’s national men’s soccer team.
And, for the first time in a long time, Commonwealth will be packed. More than 45,000 fans are expected in the stadium for each game of the World Cup Qualifiers.
Team Canada will host Costa Rica at Commonwealth Stadium on Friday, Nov. 12 and Mexico on Tuesday, Nov. 16.
Friday’s game starts at 7 p.m. but doors will open two hours earlier. Proof of vaccination and pre-screening of all fans will start at 5 p.m.
For those taking transit, there will be park-and-ride services at six locations across the city. A $6 to-and-from special event fare will be offered starting at 5:30 p.m.
LRT service will be running at full capacity.
“There will be trains running every five minutes in both directions,” said Gary Lamont, general supervisor of special events for Edmonton Transit. “We’re going to put on a full park and ride in six locations.”
“Masks are still mandatory on all transit,” Lamont added.
Park-and-ride buses will be using both front and rear bus doors to pick up passengers more efficiently after the game.
City officials urge fans to arrive early and plan ahead.
“Right now there aren’t any capacity limits on Edmonton Transit,” Lamont said.
“We’re anticipating it could be very, very busy. There’s a big crowd coming to the stadium — a crowd we haven’t seen in quite some time.”
“The stadium will have to have proof of vaccination. We certainly are encouraging people to get on our park and ride as soon as they can.”
Team Canada currently sits third in the CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying standings, with the top three teams earning an automatic berth into the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 tournament. A pair of wins in Edmonton will put Canada in an outstanding position to qualify for its first World Cup since 1986.