On Wednesday night, Ottawa Fury FC announced that CONCACAF (the governing body that overseas major pro soccer in North America, Central America and the Caribbean) is seeking to prevent Ottawa from participating in the USL (United Soccer League) Championship in 2019.
Many believe this is because Fury FC have agreed to extend their contract with the USL and not join the new Canadian Premier League, which launches in 2019 with 7 teams. Neither Canada Soccer or the USL had any objection with Fury FC remaining in the USL next season.
Fury General Manger Julian DeGuzman addressed this on social media on Wednesday night…
The Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group (OSEG), the parent company of Fury FC and the United Soccer League have put out statements saying that they will fight this decision.
Statement from Mark Goudie, Fury FC President and CEO:
“This action by CONCACAF is unprecedented and simply wrong. Our lawyers have requested that CONCACAF immediately provide further details on the basis for this decision. We also understand that Canada Soccer will be seeking clarification as to the rationale for CONCACAF’s decision. In the event that CONCACAF does not immediately reconsider its position, Fury FC will take all steps – including legal proceedings – so as to ensure that it will be able to continue providing professional soccer to our loyal and new fans and supporters in a league of our choosing. I am also grateful for the pledges of support that we have received today from Canadian MLS clubs Montreal Impact, Toronto FC and the Vancouver Whitecaps FC, who understand the important role that Fury FC currently plays in the Canadian professional soccer pathway and landscape at the high-calibre North American Division II level.”
Statement Jake Edwards, President of the United Soccer League:
“It’s wrong. Forcing a team to move from the league it is scheduled to play in – and wants to play in – three months before the season starts is unacceptable. Schedules have been set, players signed, season tickets sold. It’s not fair to anyone, including the 35 other teams in our league who are being negatively affected. Allowing this to happen would set a very poor precedent and we’ll do everything in our power to support the Ottawa Fury FC.”
Soccer fans also had their say on Twitter…
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