(Editor’s Note: As 2019 winds down, BC Soccer Web goes into holiday mode. We’ll be updating the site throughout the holidays with major stories from the world of soccer as they happen. We’ll be back for another year of BC Soccer coverage on Monday, January 6, 2020. Thank you for your support over the years and all the best to you and yours this holiday season.)
DECEMBER 20, 2019
Whitecaps FC unveil 2020 MLS regular season schedule – Whitecaps FC
Vancouver Whitecaps FC unveiled their 2020 MLS regular season schedule on Thursday, bookended by a battle of incoming marquee strikers in their home opener versus Sporting Kansas City on February 29 and a Cascadia clash versus Portland Timbers on Decision Day at BC Place on October 4.
MLS releases 2020 regular-season schedule – MLS
Matches for the league’s 25th season will begin on Feb. 29 and run all the way through Decision Day on Oct. 4.
The cost of success in Major League Soccer – AFTN
In my last article (https://aftn.ca/how-have-vancouver-whitecaps-fared-since-2011-in-mls-points/), I discussed a very simple bit of math to graphically display where the Whitecaps’ yearly point totals have compared to the rest of the league since 2011. I set that out to put some objectivity into what we all knew subjectively and instinctively.
Pro deal for Camara, who helped Surrey’s CCB team win national soccer championship – Surrey Now Leader
Montreal native Mamadi Camara says he’s excited to sign with Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC.
Premier League: 10 things to look out for this weekend – The Guardian
Leicester will be looking to emulate 2016 at City, Frank Lampard has a special reunion and Freddie Ljungberg signs off.
Arsenal completes hiring of Mikel Arteta as manager – Sportsnet
Arsenal hired Mikel Arteta as manager on Friday, hoping its former midfielder can turn around the fortunes of the ailing London club after spending more than three years learning the coaching ropes as assistant to Pep Guardiola at English champion Manchester City.
Cavalry FC getting old gang back together for 2020 CPL season – Calgary Sun
The new year is shaping up nicely for Cavalry FC.
Canada Soccer’ Women’s National Team to play in first edition of Tournoi de France in March 2020 – CSA
Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Team have confirmed their participation of the newly established Tournoi de France which will take place in Calais and Valenciennes from 4-10 March 2020. Canada will face France, Netherlands and Brazil at the friendly tournament which will take place during the March FIFA international window.
NWSL’s Reign FC acquired by owners of French powerhouse Lyon – NBC Sports
Reign FC of the National Women’s Soccer League has been acquired by the OL Groupe, the parent company of French powerhouse Olympique Lyonnais.
12 years after harassment complaints, Whitecaps policies still lacking – Vancouver Sun
Unlike most other Canadian sports organizations in 2008, the Whitecaps didn’t have a formal complaints policy, a code of conduct or appropriate oversight of coaching staff, according to the 32-page report released earlier this week.
Premier League winter break, February schedule announced – NBC Sports
With the first-ever winter break for the Premier League coming up in February, the five games which will be played on two consecutive weekends have been announced.
The 100 best male footballers in the world 2019 – The Guardian
The Guardian’s final countdown is here. Find out who is No 1 and the full rundown of this year’s 100.
DECEMBER 19, 2019
Canada Soccer announces 2020 Canadian Championship schedule – CSA
Canada Soccer’s 2020 Canadian Championship will feature 12 teams from four leagues across four rounds beginning in June 2020 and culminating in the crowning of the 2020 Canadian Championship winner on 23 September 2020. The 2020 Canadian Championship winner will raise the Voyageurs Cup and be provided Canada’s only direct entry into the 2021 Concacaf Champions League competition.
Date with Vancouver Whitecaps in sight for Pacific FC – Times Colonist
Pacific FC could be kicking a ball across the Cambie Street Bridge. PFC is a step away from playing the Vancouver Whitecaps of Major League Soccer.
12 teams from four leagues to contest 2020 Canadian Championship – Sportsnet
Twelve teams from four different leagues will contest the 2020 Canadian Championship across four rounds.
Christine Sinclair named Canada Soccer Player of the Decade – CSA
Christine Sinclair has been named the Canada Soccer Player of the Decade after an unparalleled 10 years of world-class performances in which she continued to build a legacy as of one of Canada’s greatest athletes of all time. A Concacaf champion in 2010 and back-to-back Olympic medal winner from London 2012 and Rio 2016, she was the 2012 Lou Marsh Trophy and Bobbie Rosenfeld Award winner, the 2011 WPS Championship MVP, and seven-time Canada Soccer Canadian Player of the Year.
Whitecaps FC acquire marquee Canadian striker Lucas Cavallini on club-record transfer fee – Whitecaps FC
Vancouver Whitecaps FC announced on Monday that the club has acquired Lucas Cavallini from Liga MX side Club Puebla on a club-record transfer fee. The Canadian international has agreed to a Designated Player contract through 2022 with an option for 2023. Cavallini will officially join the club’s roster pending receipt of his International Transfer Certificate.
Axel Schuster looking to build off Cavallini signing in next steps of Project Whitecaps – BTS
After the recent signing of the Vancouver Whitecaps latest DP, striker Lucas Cavallini, we analyze some of the thoughts shared by Sporting Director Axel Schuster during Cavallini’s press conference this week, as he gives us an idea of what the rest of the offseason may look like for Vancouver.
Points Matter: So just how bad (or good) have Vancouver Whitecaps fared since 2011? – AFTN
That cold wind blowing you feel isn’t a sign of the season. No, that’s the collective sigh of relief of we ‘Caps fans as finally a signing has occurred and we can welcome Lucas Cavallini into the fold. December 16th is a little past our manager’s proposed deadline of December 15 to secure some signings (and it is only one at that), but hey it is a start! Kudos to all for getting this done.
Montreal Impact sign Canadian midfielder Samuel Piette to three-year contract – Toronto Star
The Montreal Impact signed Canadian midfielder Samuel Piette to a three-year contract on Wednesday.
Columbus Crew set to break transfer record for Liga MX playmaker – Yahoo Sports
Another Liga MX star is set to join Major League Soccer, according to reports.
Orlando City Close to Acquisition of Brazilian Center Back Antônio Carlos – The Mane Land
The Lions are looking to add the 26-year-old defender on a one-year loan deal with an option to buy.
Major League Soccer comes to Charlotte in 2021 – Charlotte MLS
Commissioner Don Garber officially announced today that Major League Soccer (MLS) has awarded an expansion team to Charlotte, North Carolina – one of the fastest-growing cities in the United States. MLS’ club for the Carolinas will be owned by Carolina Panthers (NFL) owner David Tepper and begin play in the 2021 season at Bank of America Stadium.
A closer look at the next possible MLS expansion markets – SBI
MLS commissioner Don Garber stated on Tuesday that Charlotte was “likely the last expansion team” but likely is the key word. Investors across the nation continue to line up willing to pay increasing expansion fees, and that does not figure to stop any time soon.
Whitecaps FC release Sport Law & Strategy Group review of safe sport practices – Whitecaps FC
Vancouver Whitecaps FC released on Wednesday the report dated December 13, 2019 from the independent review conducted by the Sport Law & Strategy Group (SLSG) of the club’s past and current safe sport policies and procedures, and the actions taken by Whitecaps FC in response to incidents that occurred in 2008. In addition, two other historical matters were reviewed and are addressed in the report.
Review recommends Whitecaps improve communication and handling of complaints – Medicine Hat News
An independent third-party review of the Vancouver Whitecaps stemming from allegations of harassment and bullying in 2008 against a former women’s team coach has recommended the club improve its communication efforts and take steps to ensure that all complaints are properly documented and addressed.
‘Caps acquire $50,000 of TAM from RSL for Zac MacMath – Whitecaps FC
Vancouver Whitecaps FC announced on Tuesday that the club has acquired $50,000 of 2020 Targeted Allocation Money from Real Salt Lake in exchange for goalkeeper Zac MacMath.
Episode 371 – The AFTN Soccer Show (Think Tank with Lucas Cavallini and Axel Schuster) – AFTN
If Vancouver Whitecaps are going to go to war in Major League Soccer next season, they’ve now got themselves a tank to help them in their battles.
LMG finds scoring touch – Cowichan Valley Citizen
After a frustrating scoreless draw the week before, Cowichan LMG responded by filling the net this past Friday night.
Road loss to top team ends 2019 schedule for Powell River Villa – Powell River Peak
Powell River Villa lost to Lakehill FC, currently in first place in Vancouver Island Soccer League Division 1 standings, by a score of 9-2 on Saturday, December 14, at Braefoot Park in Victoria.
Comox Valley United suffers first loss of soccer season – Comox Valley Record
The Comox Valley United men’s soccer team suffered its first defeat Dec. 15, shut out 5-0 in Victoria by the Highlanders.
49ers will aim at Grover Cup when season resumes – Cowichan Valley Citizen
The Cowichan 49ers are resolving to refocus in 2020. With two losses in the Vancouver Island Soccer League masters A season so far, the team is in unfamiliar territory and may be out of the running for a third straight league title, but there are still ways to salvage the season.
Sacramento Republic FC Promote Mark Briggs to Head Coach – USL
Sacramento Republic FC today announced Mark Briggs as the club’s next head coach effective immediately, continuing the team’s preparation for the 2020 USL Championship season. The terms of the two-year agreement were not disclosed. The club’s extensive search examined top-tier candidates with experience across a wide array of professional soccer.
Women’s Super League: Izzy Christiansen close to rejoining Everton from Lyon – BBC Sport
England midfielder Izzy Christiansen is close to completing a move to Everton from European champions Lyon.
Kosovare Asllani: ‘Spanish women’s football strike is about more than one league. It’s about football all over the world’ – The Telegraph
History could be made this week in Spain, and though it was not necessarily on Kosovare Asllani’s radar before July, she is happy to be a part of it.
HFX Wanderers captivated sports fans in 2019 – Chronicle-Herald
The HFX Wanderers were the local sports success story of 2019.
Barcelona and Real Madrid share spoils in goalless ‘Clasico’ marked by Catalan protests – France 24
Real Madrid outplayed Barcelona for large parts of Wednesday’s La Liga clash but were unable to make their dominance count and the ‘Clasico’ ended goalless to leave the Catalans top of the standings on goal difference.
Club World Cup: Firmino takes Liverpool through to final – UEFA
UEFA Champions League holders Liverpool are through to Saturday’s FIFA Club World Cup final.
League Cup: Man Utd, Man City, Leicester win – NBC Sports
Manchester City, Manchester United, and Leicester City joined Aston Villa in the League Cup semifinals with very different wins in Wednesday’s quarterfinals.
Red Star Belgrade manager quits with team top of league – Yahoo Sports
Vladan Milojevic announced on Thursday that he was quitting as manager of Red Star Belgrade even though the team is 11 points clear in the Serbian league.
Manchester City furious as Mikel Arteta holds final talks over Arsenal job – The Guardian
Mikel Arteta’s lawyers are holding final talks with Arsenal to conclude a deal for him to take the manager’s job, a turn of events that has left Manchester City furious.
FC Cologne pull out of deal to run football academy in China – The Guardian
FC Cologne are pulling out of a deal to run a football academy in China, with a member of the club council saying they should not support “such a totalitarian and brutal dictatorship”.
PSG face Saint-Étienne in Coupe de la Ligue quarters – Ligue 1
Paris Saint-Germain will face AS Saint-Étienne in the pick of the Coupe de la Ligue BKT quarter-final fixtures while Olympique Lyonnais face fellow Ligue 1 Conforama outfit Stade Brestois 29.
FIFA Forward fosters more green and sustainable football infrastructures worldwide – FIFA
In order to avoid impacting the social, economic and ecological processes related to human equity, diversity, and the functionality of natural systems and environment, FIFA has taken the initiative to support its 211 MAs to build highly innovative and long-lasting sustainable sport infrastructures.
After 17 years and a hop from screen to stage, Bend It Like Beckham feels more relevant than ever – CBC
More than a decade after the film’s release, the story was adapted by Chadha into a musical that originally debuted in London’s West End in 2015. And after a successful one-year run in the U.K., Chadha is now bringing the story to North American audiences with a run at the St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts in Toronto from December 8 to January 5.