Jump to content
Initial B

CPL League Future Format and Table Structure

Recommended Posts

4 hours ago, Impactsupporter said:

I think this makes sense for D1 and D3.  I am ambivalent about D2 because I am not sure that some of these teams in that division will be able to withstand travel costs from coast to coast.  In a recent interview with Alex Bunbury he stated that he sees the CPL at 20 teams and he himself is ambivalent about pro-rel because of the money investors have put in.  Maybe if they used a split format as they do in Scotland for the SPL that could simulate relegation.

https://bleacherreport.com/articles/1596665-scottish-premier-league-in-defence-of-the-split

Both the Ukraine and Poland have the same sort of split into championship and relegation rounds. But to make it work you would need a league that works in multiples of 4, so after the split you don't end up with clubs with bye weeks. The Canadian climate is such that each team has to maximize the weeks available for play and shouldn't be sitting idle. Therefore the first Division would have to have either 8, 12, or 16 teams.  8 feels too small and 12 or more feels too big. But then some of those articles mention a rumbling from owners that they want to protect their investments and might not be as amenable to Pro-Rel as they first thought.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One other realization I made is the length of our season. I'm assuming that there will be no indoor stadiums in this league, so the league would only be able to use the outdoors from around mid-April to just before the November International Break (Which leaves us with an over 3-month long off-season, but that's another topic). That's about 30 weeks, but international breaks in September and October and the 3-4 weeks in June/July for international tournaments (World/Gold Cup) means the CPL season has to fit within 24 weeks. I *think* 24 regular season games would be enough for player development, since CPL teams are guaranteed another 2 mid-week games as part of the Voyageurs Cup competition from June to August and there will be more midweek games for CONCACAF League matches from August to October. But I feel the rhythm of the season should be a league game every weekend (barring international dates) and the occasional friendly/cup game every couple of mid-weeks. What's your view on the seasonal window?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How I see it, lets say in 10-20 years:
D1: National, 10-14 teams

D2: 16-20 teams, 2-4 conferences

D3: provincial or regionale (Ontario, Québec, BC?, Maritimes, Prairies, West?)

 

That would be the CPL managed pyramid. The reserve teams of D1-D2 would play in D3

What do you think about it?

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
48 minutes ago, mtlsab said:

How I see it, lets say in 10-20 years:
D1: National, 10-14 teams

D2: 16-20 teams, 2-4 conferences

D3: provincial or regionale (Ontario, Québec, BC?, Maritimes, Prairies, West?)

 

That would be the CPL managed pyramid. The reserve teams of D1-D2 would play in D3

What do you think about it?

 

If we have 20 teams that can afford it, I'd much prefer a single 20 team nation wide top division than two divisions of 10 teams; and I'd be totally fine with our second division being split into regional leagues. I can't see a second division being profitable enough to afford the travel necessary in Canada. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I personally believe that a national D2 is a pipe dream and we should not even think about it. Or at least, CPL should not. What we need is for the provincial associations to get their acts together to set up equivalents of what we see in Ontario and Quebec, so you have a high level of semi-pro soccer in every province, or in regions (Maritimes).

I also do not believe we will ever get to promotion-relegation in Canada, sorry to say. Unless we have major and ongoing initiative from the CSA to oblige it. 

As for division size, since 8 seems like a reasonable minimum, if we get to 10 that sets us up well, you enable a balanced schedule of 36 matches in a season. That does put pressure on scheduling, and makes midweek games inevitable (maybe up to 6-7). But it is a full season.  

You start a bit earlier and end a bit later. You eliminate playoffs and have an overall table winner at the end, in a single table.

They table of the league can be used for seeding the Voyageurs Cup, to keep a bit of incentive up late in the season for weaker squads. If they decide they really do need playoffs, to keep all teams competitive until the end, and to give added revenue streams to the better teams, I am not sure how you are going to have enough dates. The minimum number of playoff games would be 3 (4 best play semis home and away and a final at the best team's stadium), and a maximum, saying 6 make the playoffs, would be 6 games, where 2-6 and 3-4 home and away, and then semis, and then a home and away final. 

In a ten team league, with V Cup and playoffs, the CPL sides would be looking at upward of 45 games. That is hard on what are going to be limited rosters with no forecast of feeder or B teams. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Honest question though - is the difference between a 2-4 conference D2 and provincial/regional leagues significant or is it largely just semantics?

If you go to the high end of the conference system, you could end up with 4 - West, ON, QC, and Atlantic (and for everyone saying Maritimes, you are omitting Newfoundland).  That is a legit conference system - unless you just want to go East/West, though the clusters of ON and QC both in the East make that a bit awkward.  

Personally, I don't think legitimizing that sort of D2 structure as teams are able to come on board is over-reaching.  When you look at the list of communities noted in the "new teams" thread, there are a ton of places where a D2 level franchise might be viable.  Revenue would be limited, but lets not forget that the budgets would be appropriately low.  Maybe it is a bit of a stretch, but I don't think it is entirely out of the question over the next 10-20 years..  And given that the league officials have talked about pro-rel as an end goal, it seems like they are open to that sort of mechanism.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here are some of my thoughts.

1. D2 won't work if it's not split up, at least into 2 geographical areas.
2. D2 probably won't work without the promise of pro/rel.
3. It will be hard to fill up more than 10 or 12 teams at the D1 level without D2.

Reasons for number 1. Obviously, it's cost reduction. You can only reduce player salaries so much, so there has to be another way to make smaller cities viable.

Reasons for number 2. In addition to reducing the cost, it would also help a lot to give these cities a reason to care, and the chance of promotion would be the best possible motivator. It would also give them something unique over, say, their local Junior hockey team.

Reasons for number 3. There are probably about 10 (give or take) cities that are large enough to consistently sustain a pro team in whatever sport. To get more than that I feel like it probably has to be done by committee. Maybe there are 10 (for the sake of argument) more candidates to make up the next few spots, but it's hard to know which 10, so it's tough to pick 2 and get rid of the other 8. Plus, if a team is struggling, rather than having year after year of being in the basement of the league, losing fans along the way and eventually folding, you can replace that team with a ready team that is on the upswing. Honestly, in 2012 as a TFC fan I was wishing TFC could get relegated so that we could maybe be competitive the next season. It would have been better than watching them lose virtually every game.

All that being said, I have no idea if we will actually be able to accomplish a D2. It's fun to speculate what the pyramid could look like, but the reality is we have to make the CPL (and L1O and PLSQ) a success first!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was playing around with the Scottish method of a Championship Round and also thought about the player quality argument for CPL teams and the issues regarding travel. I did like the idea that Rugby League had of splitting and combining the bottom/top halves of their 1st and 2nd divisions into another group to decide who gets promoted for the following season. So I've made a new structure as noted below. It's a 24 game season, there is no cross-conference games at the D2 Level, and the "Sorting Round" gives qualifying D2 teams a taste of what Div 1 play would be like, and decide if they can handle the additional transportation and operating costs or not. If the Sorting D2 team qualifies for Div 1, but doesn't think they have the financial means to afford it next year, the CPL would be able to ask the next-lower team on the table until they find a club that could take their place. At worst, both relegated Div 1 clubs just return to Div 1 the following year. They might have to rebalance the 2nd Div conferences before the end of each season, which might lead to an Ontario team playing in the west.

FutureCPLStructureChamp.PNG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Time to resume the conversation on CPL format.

One thought I had that I have not seen mentioned before:

In England the capturing and presentation of silverware is typically done in glorious late April or early May sunshine and everybody is up for it. In Canada, where football necessarily has a summer season, the season will inevitably close in miserable late autumn cold when everybody is preparing for winter, and interest is bound to wane for teams just playing out the string.

I have found that a great time to visit England to watch football is in September/October, when the season is new, optimism abounds, and anything is possible.

So here it is: What if the CPL season ended, and crowned the Champion, mid to late summer (say late August)? And then started the new season shortly thereafter? The season would run September to August, with a six month winter break (don't laugh, keep reading!). And those autumn months would be the early optimistic part of the season when everybody is optimistic and every point counts because anything is possible. Furthermore, after the early season jockeying has taken shape and winter arrives, teams that have fared poorly would have that winter transfer window to strengthen and possibly mount their title challenge anew in the spring, thus keeping everybody invested over the winter. Not to mention that the Championship would be decided and presented in glorious late summer sunshine rather than autunm cold.

I think this would work best with a single season but it could work with Apertura/Clausura too, perhaps with the Apertura season being the Fall one rather than the Spring one.

Any merit?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
45 minutes ago, Lofty said:

Time to resume the conversation on CPL format.

One thought I had that I have not seen mentioned before:

In England the capturing and presentation of silverware is typically done in glorious late April or early May sunshine and everybody is up for it. In Canada, where football necessarily has a summer season, the season will inevitably close in miserable late autumn cold when everybody is preparing for winter, and interest is bound to wane for teams just playing out the string.

I have found that a great time to visit England to watch football is in September/October, when the season is new, optimism abounds, and anything is possible.

So here it is: What if the CPL season ended, and crowned the Champion, mid to late summer (say late August)? And then started the new season shortly thereafter? The season would run September to August, with a six month winter break (don't laugh, keep reading!). And those autumn months would be the early optimistic part of the season when everybody is optimistic and every point counts because anything is possible. Furthermore, after the early season jockeying has taken shape and winter arrives, teams that have fared poorly would have that winter transfer window to strengthen and possibly mount their title challenge anew in the spring, thus keeping everybody invested over the winter. Not to mention that the Championship would be decided and presented in glorious late summer sunshine rather than autunm cold.

I think this would work best with a single season but it could work with Apertura/Clausura too, perhaps with the Apertura season being the Fall one rather than the Spring one.

Any merit?

Full marks for creative though, but this idea is not for me, sorry. No need to reinvent the wheel here. Single table from April to September, 4 team ‘playoffs’ in October. Fourth place was accessible to just about every team right up until the end of memory serves... this would’ve kept everyone interested because there would still be something to fight for. It also has the benefit of being simple and easy to understand. 
 

I was previously against playoffs, but having experienced my club finishing in third and yet finding the end of the season to be academic, I’ve changed my mind. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If I’m not mistaken these two finals games were the best attended games apart from the CPL first game in Hamilton which was free. Moreover, just the atmosphere in the two stadiums and the fan engagement seemed to be better than any other games all season. This is what playoffs usually bring and sets it apart from regular season games. Teams with players who have experience playing under pressure and who have players that don’t fold under pressure are the teams that usually win. The beauty of playoffs is that there is no tomorrow the margin of error are drastically diminished. There is a reason why a lot of leagues in Europe now use playoffs to determine promotion into the next level. Watch any promotion playoffs and there is no comparison to watching a regular season game. If your truly a great team and finished first overall in the regular season then prove in the playoffs as well where the pressure is really on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don’t like it Lofty. Seems like a lot of downside to have trophy presentations without wearing jackets, and to satisfy your autumn nostalgia.

MLS changed their season and playoff structure in order to get the playoffs done without an international break interruption during the playoffs. I don’t think we want a 6 month break in the season.

Plus one more thing is that one of the prizes for being CPL champion is that you qualify for CONCACAF League. With your system, depending on the details, you would either get a team rushing off to the competition the next week after winning CPL, or you would have a full year before joining and likely have a largely different team participating than the players that qualified.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, Kent said:

I don’t like it Lofty. Seems like a lot of downside to have trophy presentations without wearing jackets, and to satisfy your autumn nostalgia.

MLS changed their season and playoff structure in order to get the playoffs done without an international break interruption during the playoffs. I don’t think we want a 6 month break in the season.

Plus one more thing is that one of the prizes for being CPL champion is that you qualify for CONCACAF League. With your system, depending on the details, you would either get a team rushing off to the competition the next week after winning CPL, or you would have a full year before joining and likely have a largely different team participating than the players that qualified.

Good point about CONCACAF League. That is a downside I had not considered. Although, even now Forge will wait around 9 months before they compete so perhaps not a show stopper.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Honestly I don't understand people who keep insisting on promotion and relegation in a North American sports league. Let alone a soccer league in Canada. I think 10 years out from now if we have 10 markets that are supporting a fully professional soccer league that will be a massive success.

Promotion and relegation in a geographically massive country like Canada is virtually impossible. No idea why people keep pushing such an idea.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
29 minutes ago, grasshopper1917 said:

Honestly I don't understand people who keep insisting on promotion and relegation in a North American sports league. Let alone a soccer league in Canada. I think 10 years out from now if we have 10 markets that are supporting a fully professional soccer league that will be a massive success.

Promotion and relegation in a geographically massive country like Canada is virtually impossible. No idea why people keep pushing such an idea.

I have no idea if it will be viable in 10 or 20 years, but there are definitely ways to make lower tiers increasingly regional to avoid prohibitive travel costs.  There is no reason why geography needs to be a barrier.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
58 minutes ago, grasshopper1917 said:

Honestly I don't understand people who keep insisting on promotion and relegation in a North American sports league. Let alone a soccer league in Canada. I think 10 years out from now if we have 10 markets that are supporting a fully professional soccer league that will be a massive success.

Promotion and relegation in a geographically massive country like Canada is virtually impossible. No idea why people keep pushing such an idea.

Pragmatically speaking, you’re right of course. I think that people who are football romantics (myself included) often fantasize about the ‘perfect system’. For a lot of us (who grew up watching European football) pro/rel is exciting and organic. Unfortunately, as you say, it’s just not realistic here. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, grasshopper1917 said:

Honestly I don't understand people who keep insisting on promotion and relegation in a North American sports league. Let alone a soccer league in Canada. I think 10 years out from now if we have 10 markets that are supporting a fully professional soccer league that will be a massive success.

Promotion and relegation in a geographically massive country like Canada is virtually impossible. No idea why people keep pushing such an idea.

The biggest roadblock I see is that Turkeys don't normally vote for Christmas. If you have a seat in the top division, which you have paid for dearly in terms of risk and expenditure, are you going to vote for the introduction of relegation? And promotion, possibly at your expense, for some team who just won some football matches and took none of the risks you took in founding a national football league? Not likely!

With that said, I think it is feasible but to make it practical CPL would have had to have been created from the bottom up, not the top down as has been done.

The idea is dead in the water so far as I am concerned, no matter what Clanachan says.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/2/2019 at 11:56 PM, Lofty said:

So here it is: What if the CPL season ended, and crowned the Champion, mid to late summer (say late August)? And then started the new season shortly thereafter? The season would run September to August, with a six month winter break (don't laugh, keep reading!). And those autumn months would be the early optimistic part of the season when everybody is optimistic and every point counts because anything is possible. Furthermore, after the early season jockeying has taken shape and winter arrives, teams that have fared poorly would have that winter transfer window to strengthen and possibly mount their title challenge anew in the spring, thus keeping everybody invested over the winter. Not to mention that the Championship would be decided and presented in glorious late summer sunshine rather than autunm cold.

I worry about what that summer inter-season break would do for the state of the league.  There's contracts to be evaluated and signed, schedules to be made, tickets to be sold, etc etc.  You wouldn't be able to jump into the next season the week after your previous one, and we really can't afford to drop summer weeks in this country.

Coordinating contracts with various summer seasons would also be hell on earth.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
42 minutes ago, Gopherbashi said:

I worry about what that summer inter-season break would do for the state of the league.  There's contracts to be evaluated and signed, schedules to be made, tickets to be sold, etc etc.  You wouldn't be able to jump into the next season the week after your previous one, and we really can't afford to drop summer weeks in this country.

Coordinating contracts with various summer seasons would also be hell on earth.

My thought was that the contract situation would not change and I see no reason why it would need to: you would start the new season with exactly the same squad you had when the previous one ended.

The break between seasons would be very small and possibly indistinguishable from a continuous season. Maybe you end one weekend with much fanfare and start anew the next. Or maybe that next weekend is where you play a bunch of VCup matches, thus creating a two week break for the league while not giving up any summer weekend matchdays. Or maybe that "weekend inbetween seasons" is actually the September FIFA International window.

Lots of ways to do it, I think, if one accepts the basic premise (that the winter break is actually mid season, however the season is otherwise arranged).

Edited by Lofty

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It just seems like an odd solution with now problem. Why take a logical end point and make it illogical? It’s kind of like someone suggesting that rather than dates changing at midnight they will now change at 2pm.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 hours ago, grasshopper1917 said:

Honestly I don't understand people who keep insisting on promotion and relegation in a North American sports league. Let alone a soccer league in Canada. I think 10 years out from now if we have 10 markets that are supporting a fully professional soccer league that will be a massive success.

Promotion and relegation in a geographically massive country like Canada is virtually impossible. No idea why people keep pushing such an idea.

The people in charge of the league keep talking about it so that's why it keeps getting discussed. It's different from MLS where Don Garber says "Maybe 80 to 100 years down the road" which is code for "never going to happen". The people running the CPL have a passion and vision for promotion/relegation.  

I don't believe it's impossible. If all it takes is roughly 5,000 paid supporters to sustain a coast to coast club, the CPL have a lot of communities they can go to and after that, they can let natural selection do its thing.  

Edited by Macksam

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think the CPL guys are a bit more cagey, they say its a goal etc, but deep down I dont see how canada is any closer to pro/rel than the US.  With that whole USL-champ and USL-0ne etc they damn near have things set up for a pyramid now.  Clanahan can say all the right things, but deep down he knows that it'll be decades (if at all) 15-20 teams that can survive.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't like the two game final format. It should be 1 game. Like the Champions League Finals or MLS Cup for that matter. 

If the Champions League gets in the latter KO stages, I only watch the second game. In the first game, both clubs will always try and prevent damage. That first one is boring most of the time and typically ends in 0-0, 1-0, 0-1,1-1. Then in the second game, both teams have to go all out. So why not skip that first game all together? Yes it would have given Calgary a huge advantage but didn't they deserve that with two regular season titles?  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, shamrock said:

I don't like the two game final format. It should be 1 game. Like the Champions League Finals or MLS Cup for that matter. 

If the Champions League gets in the latter KO stages, I only watch the second game. In the first game, both clubs will always try and prevent damage. That first one is boring most of the time and typically ends in 0-0, 1-0, 0-1,1-1. Then in the second game, both teams have to go all out. So why not skip that first game all together? Yes it would have given Calgary a huge advantage but didn't they deserve that with two regular season titles?  

I think some of it is pragmatism.  CPL isn’t mature enough to preselect a venue and expect it to be full if the home team isn’t playing.  Alternatively, it is an unfair advantage in a single leg final to give one team home field.  

As for your assessment of the two legs, I disagree. The Forge home game had lots of chances - the goal differential could have been greater if Forge had been more clinical.  I would think that a home team in leg one would always want to establish a goal cushion given the disadvantage they face in the 2nd leg.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ive got a couple of concerns regarding the upcoming pyramid, Pro/Rel

Can we create a D2? (lets say 3 conferences) If yes, should we do it ASAP?
Do you believe we can handle multiple provincial leagues for D3? We already have Québec and Ontario, BC is Under construction. Can we have one for Alberta only? One for Sask, Manitoba and Northwestern Ontario? Could we have one for Maritimes only?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...