‘Island Games’ a closed-door affair

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Canadian Premier League August 2020 update Image: Canadian Premier League

The Canadian Premier League (CPL) has decided to stage a reduced 2020 season as a made-for-TV event at Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island in Canada.

All games will be held behind closed doors starting on August 13th and finishing in September. It has been officially named ‘Island Games’.

The Canadian Premier League 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 CPL settled for Charlottetown as the site for the fixture over rival bids from the City of Langford, British Columbia, and Moncton, New Brunswick – all in Canada.

All eight CPL teams, including expansion team Atlético Ottawa, will initially play a round-robin tournament of 28 regular-season games, with each team playing each other once. The top four teams will move to the second round group phase, with the top two then progressing to the single-match championship game.

The winner will earn a spot in the 2021 Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (Concacaf) League, a qualifying tournament for the Concacaf Champions League.

The Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (Concacaf) is one of FIFA’s six continental governing bodies for association football. Its 41 members include nations and territories in North America, including Central America and the Caribbean.

The Concacaf League is an annual continental club football competition organized by Concacaf. The Concacaf Champions League is also an annual continental club football competition organized by Concacaf for the top football clubs in North America, Central America, and the Caribbean.

Stated CPL Commissioner David Clanachan, “We are excited about ‘The Island Games’…and the level of support from the Government of Prince Edward Island, and the City of Charlottetown who have been at the forefront of all our planning with our priority being that every participant and Prince Edward Island citizens will be safe. We are appreciative of all their hard work and their enduring support in making our season a reality.”

Around 300 players, staff, officials and broadcast personnel will partake of in the quarantined event in the wake of the global COVID-19 pandemic which has left the world shattered. The league is taking over the Delta Hotels Prince Edward, while games will be played at the University of Prince Edward Island (UPEI) Alumni Field.

“As a highly ranked Canadian sport hosting destination, Charlottetown is always at the top of our game. Hosting the CPL is sport tourism at its core and will drive much prosperity to our capital City,” maintained Philip Brown, Charlottetown Mayor.

All 35 games will be beamed live on OneSoccer, MediaPro’s Canada’s subscription streaming service. Games will be produced in High Definition, with a minimum of nine cameras and a strong team of experienced professionals and talent at each game.

Due to the coronavirus scourge, CPL players have had 25 percent of their contracts deferred, while coaches, technical staff, and club and league employees have taken wage cut. The CPL has also sought C$15m in “short-term financing” from the Canadian Federal Government.

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