CPL team coming to Saskatchewan, almost!

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Canada Saskatoon new stadium Image: Living Sky Sports @LivingSkySport1 (Twitter)

The Canadian Premier League (CPL) is another step closer to arriving in Saskatchewan (Canadian province).

The ‘canpl.ca’ stated that recently, the Living Sky Sports and Entertainment – the ownership group previously granted exclusive rights to bring an expansion CPL club to Saskatoon – held a presser recently to reveal new renderings of the stadium they intend to build at the Prairieland Park in South Saskatoon.

The Canadian Premier League (CPL) is a professional soccer league in Canada. At the top of the Canadian soccer league system, it is the country’s primary national soccer league competition. The league consists of eight teams, from five of Canada’s 10 provinces.

The Living Sky Sports and Entertainment Inc. (LSSE) is a Saskatchewan-based company specifically incorporated for the purpose of launching a professional soccer club for the Province of Saskatchewan. The LSSE has entered into an agreement with the Canadian Soccer Business (CSB) and has acquired the exclusive rights for the development and launch of a Canadian Premier League (CPL) team.

Since its earliest days as a center for agricultural excellence, the Prairieland Park in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan has evolved into a provincial leader in the development of trade shows, conferences, special events, industry expositions, concerts, cabarets, and much more! With more than $16 million being pushed as cash infusion in the form of infrastructure enhancement in recent years, the Prairieland Park has become one of Canada’s premier venues.

The 136-acre park features easy access, ample onsite parking within shouting distance from downtown Saskatoon and offering over 200,000 square feet of world class meeting, trade show and conference space … Saskatchewan’s largest all-under-one-roof trade exposition space.

The ‘canpl.ca’ further stated that the LSSE revealed that they’ve put together a detailed financial estimate for the project, which is intended to be a multiuse facility that can support various sports (including, of course a CPL team).

Although the funding isn’t fully over the line, the LSSE founder Al Simpson explained that the proposed $28 million project remains on track with the timeline he first suggested when the expansion side was announced in 2021.

Stated Simpson, “We would like to be on the field in 2023, but I’d also suggested that it’s probably more realistic that we hit the field in 2024, and I think that still holds true. The timeline really hasn’t changed on this. If we get our financing in place by the end of year 2022, we should be able to put a shovel in the ground and start construction in Saskatchewan in the Spring of 2023, which would line up nicely for us to be able to play in the Spring of 2024.”

Simpson added that, although at times it’s been an arduous process in advancing the stadium proposal, such an extensive project takes time to come together – “The first thing I can say about a process like this, in terms of launching a CPL team especially when you need a venue to play in, is it’s going to be a marathon, not a sprint. These sorts of things don’t get done in eight, 10, 12 months, there are a lot of things to consider. We’re not moving as fast as I would like us to move, but that’s just part and parcel of the world that we’re in.”

Continued Simpson, “It’s been a process, we understood it was going to be a process. We still have, I would suggest, six to eight months ahead of us in terms of accessing Government funding for this, and it’s no certainty that that’s going to happen of course, but that’s the path that we’re on right now.”

Nonetheless, the support within Saskatchewan’s soccer community has been strong. Over 300 people attended the presser, most of them local supporters eager to know more about the expansion bid.

Plus, Simpson added that the LSSE has received plenty of positive support from not only the local soccer clubs, but also those in the rugby, lacrosse, and cricket communities that will also benefit from the multiuse stadium at the Prairieland Park.

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