Surrey's Central City Breakers (in blue) in action during the 2019 Toyota National Championships final game, played in St. Johns. CCB won the game and the Challenge Trophy. (File photo: Trevor Wragg).

Canada Soccer cancels 2021 club nationals, including two Surrey-hosted tournaments

Newton Athletic Park was set to stage games involving club teams of men and women

Surrey won’t host Canada Soccer’s Toyota National Championships this fall, now that the sport’s governing body has cancelled all such tournaments due to “the ongoing challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic related to participant health and safety.”

Newton Athletic Park would have been busy with Jubilee and Challenge Trophy games for club teams of men and women from across the country, with Surrey FC the host association.

On Friday (July 9), Canada Soccer also announced the cancellation of U-15 Cup, U-17 Cup and Eastern and Western Masters competitions, planned for different cities across Canada.

“Factoring primarily into this decision are the significant ongoing concerns for the health and safety of all participants due to the issues related to the possibility of COVID-19 transmission during the competition,” says a post on Canada Soccer’s website (canadasoccer.com).

“In assessing the risks and potential mitigation strategies it was established that it would pose a demanding logistical and financial challenge to the participating teams and Local Organizing Committees to ensure compliance with all required protocols.

“Despite the positive news of improvement across the country,” the post continues, “the potential COVID-19 health and safety issues inherent with bringing together thousands of youth-aged participants to attend the Toyota National Championships during an ongoing pandemic made clear the decision to not move forward with the planning and hosting of the 2021 competition.”

• RELATED STORY, from March 2021: Surrey FC’s soccer goals: Nationals, BCSPL start, and getting more girls to play the game.

As it stands, Surrey FC is still scheduled to host the U17 Cup in 2022 and the Challenge/Jubilee adult tournaments in 2024, after Canada Soccer announced host venues for three future editions of its Toyota National Championships on March 18.

Surrey’s Central City Breakers men’s team won the Challenge Trophy in October 2019 in St. John’s, after an emotional few months following the car-crash death of teammate Brandon Bassi.

• RELATED STORY/VIDEO, from 2019: Surrey soccer team wins national title for teammate Bassi, killed in car crash.

• READ ALSO: In honour of player killed in crash, Surrey soccer team becomes BB5 United.



tom.zillich@surreynowleader.com

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