• Updated: CSA suspends Quebec Soccer Federation

      The Canadian Soccer Association announced tonight that the CSA board has moved to immediately suspend the Quebec Soccer Association until it lifts its ban on turbans.

      As CSN first reported on Friday, the CSA had given the QSF until Monday to reverse its ban or face punishment.

      Neither side responded to requests for comment today and the release came late in the evening.

      The CSA did say this in the release though:

      “The Canadian Soccer Association has requested on 6 June that the Quebec Soccer Federation reverse its position on turbans/patkas/keski with no resolution,” said Victor Montagliani, President of the Canadian Soccer Association, following the Board of Directors meeting. “The Quebec Soccer Federation’s inaction has forced us to take measures in order to ensure soccer remains accessible to the largest number of Canadians.”

      According to the release, the suspension will be lifted once the Canadian Soccer Association receives demonstration that the Quebec Soccer Federation has lifted the ban and applies satisfactorily the Canadian Soccer Association’s policy in the matter.

      For those looking for meaning in this situation, the following has been gleaned from informed members of the Canadian soccer community.

      First, and the CSA did confirm this, this ruling has no impact on the Montreal Impact. They are members of the CSA directly and as such nothing that impacts the province will impact them. Additionally, and this part was not confirmed by the CSA, there are some minor support service issues that QSF occassionally provides to the Impact that could temporarily derail certain game operations but the effect is expected to be minor.

      Second, none of the Quebec provincial all-star teams are allowed to compete out of the province. And any other province will be forbidden from playing QSF teams.

      Third, if the suspension went on that long, the youth clubs would be forbidden in participating in the national championships this summer.

      Fourth, any nationally sanctioned referees are forbidden from calling any games in Quebec. This is the one that could have the most effect and a large number of youth games are immediately in jeoprady - unless referees are willing to go rogue. In the past, refs have faced fines for going against the wishes of the governing body. And any games that were scheduled to be reffed by a CSA badged official are immediately suspended.

      Fifth, CSN has learned that Quebec Soccer will meet tomorrow evening to discuss their next step and decide if they're going to continue with the ban on turbans or bend to the will of the CSA.

      We will continue to update this story as it develops.
      Comments 85 Comments
      1. Ben Knight's Avatar
        Ben Knight -
        Can the Montreal Impact play? When Alberta was faced with suspension a couple of years ago, high-ranking insiders told me FC Edmonton would not be able to play if it happened.
      1. Unregistered's Avatar
        Unregistered -
        So what does it mean for house leagues and semi-pro leagues in Quebec? There will be no season for them?
      1. Unregistered's Avatar
        Unregistered -
        Exactly. What does this really mean? Anything practical?

        Is Montreal out of the WWC until further notice? Are contingency plans being drawn up in the mean time?

        Are certain someones in Toronto wide eyed and drooling at the prospect of taking on Montreal's group and responsibilities if the powers that be in Quebec get their back up over this issue and turn it into a pissing contest with the CSA?

        Somehow I doubt it.

        Think "suspension" is just so much mouth. Hope I'm wrong.
      1. Unregistered's Avatar
        Unregistered -
        I hope Toronto takes Montreal's place for WWC games.
      1. baulderdash77's Avatar
        baulderdash77 -
        I applaud the CSA for standing up for what's right. Quebec had better come about. I actually think this may be a protracted game of chicken starting here though.
      1. Unregistered's Avatar
        Unregistered -
        Canadians trying to impose their will on Québec. Check. Religious minorities trying to impose their religion on people who aren't interested. Check. Sore losers plotting to get into a competition they couldn't win on the pitch. Check. CSA finding an "issue" to distract from Canada's ranking of 83rd in the world. Check. Ho-hum.
      1. Ben Knight's Avatar
        Ben Knight -
        Quebec having absolutely no soccer-related reason for doing this. Check. Every level of soccer governance above them telling them they're wrong. Check. Absolutely no factual reason for continuing to wallow in their old-school ignorance. Check.
      1. Unregistered's Avatar
        Unregistered -
        QSF Suspension: A Disaster for Everyone In Quebec Soccer. http://www.friendsofsoccer.com/?p=96
      1. Unregistered's Avatar
        Unregistered -
        Can the next article please provide actual "meaning", and not just a rehash of the official facts. How many players in what age groups are part of the QSF in Quebec? Has any sikh person actually asked to play with their turban? Who are the key individuals involved in this story?
      1. Unregistered's Avatar
        Unregistered -
        Wow! This is the most CSN has ever talked about anything to do with Quebec Soccer ever!

        Montreal is 1st in the MLS East, has graduated 5 players from it's academy to the 1st team and Quebec has started a semi-pro 3rd division league but let's ignore all that and focus on only the negative..
      1. Unregistered's Avatar
        Unregistered -
        Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
        Can the next article please provide actual "meaning", and not just a rehash of the official facts. How many players in what age groups are part of the QSF in Quebec? Has any sikh person actually asked to play with their turban? Who are the key individuals involved in this story?
        There are between 100-200 baptised Sikhs affected by the QSF's ruling, ranging from 6 years old to 25 years. In many cases, players have been playing with turbans and patkas for years (as they do throughout Canada, England, the United States and other countries), and have now been told they no longer can play with their teams.
      1. Unregistered's Avatar
        Unregistered -
        As a kid, I played soccer on a team with 2 other Sikhs with turbans. We were a safety risk to the league because we beat everyone & won the championship.
      1. Unregistered's Avatar
        Unregistered -
        Quote Originally Posted by Ben Knight View Post
        Quebec having absolutely no soccer-related reason for doing this. Check. Every level of soccer governance above them telling them they're wrong. Check. Absolutely no factual reason for continuing to wallow in their old-school ignorance. Check.
        CSN writer making amalgamations between "Quebec" and "a sports federation based in Quebec". Check. CSN trying to show some relevence by stirring up a controversy at any cost. Check. CSN trying to fill pages on their site because everything have been said on their beloved, but hopeless Toronto Football Clowns. Check. CSN "reporters" missing parts of a story happening in Quebec - and consequently overdramatizing it - due to their lack of basic notions of french. Check.
      1. squizz's Avatar
        squizz -
        Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
        Religious minorities trying to impose their religion on people who aren't interested. Check.
        Yep, if I were leading a religious organization that was trying to impose its beliefs on others, my key strategy would be ensuring that six-year-olds were wearing our garb while playing soccer. That's the way to win over hearts and minds: At U6 soccer festivals.

        I mean, it's a perfect strategy, right? People take their kids to play soccer, and all of a sudden - bam! They see some kid on the other team wearing a piece of cloth on their head and it's all like, "whoa, man, I'm hypnotized! I don't know what's happening, but suddenly I know everything I've believed to this point is a lie! I gotta find out what that kid believes, 'cause it's definitely the one true faith!"

        Hell, even just talking about turbans makes me want to wear one, and believe in everything that it represents! I just can't help myself!
      1. Canadian Soccer News's Avatar
        Canadian Soccer News -
        Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
        Wow! This is the most CSN has ever talked about anything to do with Quebec Soccer ever!

        Montreal is 1st in the MLS East, has graduated 5 players from it's academy to the 1st team and Quebec has started a semi-pro 3rd division league but let's ignore all that and focus on only the negative..
        Perhaps you have never visited this page before. http://www.canadiansoccernews.com/co...07-soccer-plus

        Now, please tell me more about how we should change our site name to Toronto Soccer News etc...
      1. Canadian Soccer News's Avatar
        Canadian Soccer News -
        Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
        CSN writer making amalgamations between "Quebec" and "a sports federation based in Quebec". Check. CSN trying to show some relevence by stirring up a controversy at any cost. Check. CSN trying to fill pages on their site because everything have been said on their beloved, but hopeless Toronto Football Clowns. Check. CSN "reporters" missing parts of a story happening in Quebec - and consequently overdramatizing it - due to their lack of basic notions of french. Check.
        Please fill me in on what parts of this story we've missed. Pretty much everything we've said up until now has come to fruition so I'd love to hear how off base we are.
      1. Unregistered's Avatar
        Unregistered -
        Entire board of QSF should resign because of their ignorance on this issue, and lack of proper judgement. Certainly not earning credibilty in the rest of Canada, can't see how their membership can support them. If they don't resign, a vote of non-confidence should be taken. If staff have encouraged this ban on turbins, they should be fired for giving bad advice.
      1. Unregistered's Avatar
        Unregistered -
        You know what's really, really, funny about all this?

        Quebec soccer will have a hard, if not impossible, time being told by English Canada what will or will not be acceptable in Canada or who has the authority to decide.

        Doesn't matter if there is debate within Quebec about the matter. The justification on this or that ground or the potential for reasonable accommodation. It's all past that now isn't it?

        Either the CSA has the balls to try to enforce the National Standard or it doesn't. And its damned clear the powers that be inside Quebec are betting they don't.

        They're betting that "suspension" is just some painless, toothless, ten letter word in the English language which translates as "useless" into French.

        No turban wearing players in Quebec? How about a turban wearing FIFA ref for the WWC?

        How about that? Is that allowed?
      1. Unregistered's Avatar
        Unregistered -
        Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
        You know what's really, really, funny about all this?

        No turban wearing players in Quebec? How about a turban wearing FIFA ref for the WWC?

        How about that? Is that allowed?
        "In England, where Sikhs have been playing the game with turbans and patkas for over 50 years, we were unable to find any similar clashes between players and referees over this issue. In fact, we were able to find many glowing references to Jarnail Singh. Jarnail was a well-regarded referee in England’s professional League Two from 2004-2010. Every match he officiated, he wore a patka."

        http://www.friendsofsoccer.com/?p=69
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