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Pottsy3

Niagara CPL

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As we've heard clamouring that the commissioner sees Niagara as a real possibility for further expansion,  I guess it is time for us supporters to show investors/league operations just how badly we want a team. I've heard a few locals in the local soccer scene starting to see that the CPL is the real deal, and that professional sports could make its way to the region sooner rather than later. My brother and I are among the many Niagarans who have for years held season tickets to TFC(and now Forge FC) matches. It's time to bring that support home, and show that Niagara has its own passionate supporters.

That being said, we are looking to begin our own supporters group for a potential Niagara CPL team. We are looking for everyone and anyone who is interested in supporting grassroots initiatives, and building our way up. Eventually, we would like to set up a meeting with interested supporters, and make our presence known in the local community. We would love to brainstorm collectively, including initiatives, names, etc. 

I have temporarily setup a social media outlet, which I have yet to do anything with, but will eventually be using to spread information about events, meet ups, and other matters that exist beyond this forum. That social media can be found at twitter.com/NiagaraLocalz

and finally, yes I did try to create a logo where I spoofed the city of St. Catharines logo to somewhat resemble a "lock" monster. (no I do not have any graphic design experience clearly)

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Think it was the president rather than the commissioner, unless David Clanachan has also listed every possibility off in an Ontario context. I suspect you are doing exactly what Paul Beirne hopes for when he names cities by creating a Mississauga style buzz about it. I have an old London City programme from a CNSL game on July 2nd 1993 that lists Joe Belan as #4 for St Catherines Roma so you actually have arguably already had a top tier team previously given that was the league the remnants of the CSL went into (including the by then Toronto Rockets and the Winnipeg Fury).

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34 minutes ago, Ozzie_the_parrot said:

Think it was the president rather than the commissioner, unless David Clanachan has also listed every possibility off in an Ontario context. I suspect you are doing exactly what Paul Beirne hopes for when he names cities by creating a Mississauga style buzz about it. I have an old London City programme from a CNSL game on July 2nd 1993 that lists Joe Belan as #4 for St Catherines Roma so you actually have arguably already had a top tier team previously given that was the league the remnants of the CSL went into (including the by then Toronto Rockets and the Winnipeg Fury).

I attended a few St. Catharines Roma games back in the day. They actually housed a few notable names, including Radzinski.

 

if you give it a quick internet scan, Wikipedia seems to think that Roma turned into Concord (which produced players such as Kofi Opare and Nicolas Galvis in their youth), but in truth they’re separate entities. Beyond Roma, Niagara United was a more recent CSL team that was a constant bottom feeder plagued with scandal.

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That's awesome Pottsy.  I hear a stadium is coming to Brock as part of the Canada Games, but I struggle to see a potential owner, especially with Belan tied to Saskatoon.  But who knows.  And although he never played for Roma, Niagara has of course also produced Russel Tiebert.

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I just moved back to St. Catharines. I'm not sure how well a team here would work but if anyone wants to get together to talk CPL I could be interested. 

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one of my long standing concerns with the league in terms of expansion is how many clubs would be based in southern ontario and the gta. aside from york and hamilton we've heard ottawa, kitchener-waterloo, durham region, peel region, niagara region, windsor, and toronto proper (a combined 9 out of what 15-20 interested parties). i think i've heard more press talk regarding teams in the southern ontario than the rest of canada combined. i think clustering teams in southern ontario would change the image of the league a fair bit and would following the original csl a bit too closely.

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3 minutes ago, matty said:

...i think i've heard more press talk regarding teams in the southern ontario than the rest of canada combined...

It's Paul Beirne that was talking this up recently and when he did so he was pushing the idea of regional intensification building local derby games that away fans attend in large numbers in a similar manner to what happens in Europe. Lower mainland BC was also mentioned in that regard. Think he's right on that and that something like a London Knights vs Kitchener Rangers game could eventually work very well in soccer in the summer months in an 5000-8000 seat SSS, if budgets are kept under control and there is no attempt to try to rival MLS. These are both 500k+ markets with no CFL team and no baseball worth mentioning. The Niagara region and Windsor are also prime locations.

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Posted (edited)
14 minutes ago, Ozzie_the_parrot said:

It's Paul Beirne that was talking this up recently and when he did so he was pushing the idea of regional intensification building local derby games that away fans attend in large numbers in a similar manner to what happens in Europe. Lower mainland BC was also mentioned in that regard. Think he's right on that and that something like a London Knights vs Kitchener Rangers game could eventually work very well in soccer in the summer months in an 5000-8000 seat SSS, if budgets are kept under control and there is no attempt to try to rival MLS. These are both 500k+ markets with no CFL team and no baseball worth mentioning. The Niagara region and Windsor are also prime locations.

the thing is an ontario heavy league was attempted before and failed (given it had less money involved). importing a euro manner for rivalries also bets a lot on the interest in soccer being there which is currently somewhat of an unknown given that cpl has had somewhat of a mixed bag (3 very well attended games and 2 meh attended games). and just to state, the cpl is trying to rival mls somewhat as half the teams currently are in mls media markets, add durham and peel to that and you have 4 teams in a market shared with tfc.

i'm optimistic but am weirded out by the ontario focus when you could also use rivalries like saskatoon-regina or halifax-moncton or montreal-quebec city and avoid having a single area being home to 20-50% of your teams

Edited by matty

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5 minutes ago, The Real Marc said:

Let's just see how well York does over the course of the season before expanding in the GTA. I find Toronto, Niagara, Durham and even Peel a stretch.

We should likely be looking at Forge, not York; when considering expansion into the Niagara market for expansion.

 

59 minutes ago, matty said:

one of my long standing concerns with the league in terms of expansion is how many clubs would be based in southern ontario and the gta. aside from york and hamilton we've heard ottawa, kitchener-waterloo, durham region, peel region, niagara region, windsor, and toronto proper (a combined 9 out of what 15-20 interested parties). i think i've heard more press talk regarding teams in the southern ontario than the rest of canada combined. i think clustering teams in southern ontario would change the image of the league a fair bit and would following the original csl a bit too closely.

While I understand many of your concerns about clustering southern Ontario, the population cannot be understated. The one guarantee I know, is that any market will not last if there are no fans. If Niagara is even the slightest of possibilities, surely we should prepare by identifying interest in the region. The largest concern with a fanbase such as York, is that it seems the club had to start the supporters group as opposed to fans rallying. With no precedent of supporters, season ticket sales were slow and somewhat concerning at the start (although I will applaud the Generation XI supporters that I saw at the inaugural match). Organically establishing supporters group will allow these clustered markets to succeed.

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2 minutes ago, matty said:

the thing is an ontario heavy league was attempted before and failed...

I'm sure you have used the argument previously that things are different now when people make CSL parallels? Thirty years ago soccer was almost exclusively a recent immigrant thing in a city like London and the local city politicians and media outlets were totally gung ho about the London Tigers AA baseball team and couldn't care less about the London Lasers back in 1990 and probably although it was never stated flat out wanted it to fail. That would be different now.

Thirty years ago a lot of people in the local soccer community were skeptical that a team like the Lasers were really any better than top local amateur teams like the White Eagles (and rumours of what happened when the Lasers tried playing against teams like that in practice games didn't help) because the funding wasn't there to be genuinely full-time professional. That would be different now by the looks of what has happened so far with CanPL.

5 minutes ago, The Real Marc said:

Let's just see how well York does over the course of the season before expanding in the GTA. I find Toronto, Niagara, Durham and even Peel a stretch.

Niagara is a long drive from the GTA and doesn't deserve to be bracketed in with a Peel region team when it comes to arguments about being in TFC's shadow. Even Durham region is far enough out that the Oshawa Generals draw well in junior hockey in a way that doesn't happen when people try to make junior hockey fly in Mississauga.

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Just now, Ozzie_the_parrot said:

I'm sure you have used the argument previously that things are different now when people make CSL parallels? Thirty years ago soccer was almost exclusively a recent immigrant thing in a city like London and the local city politicians and media outlets were totally gung ho about the London Tigers AA baseball team and couldn't care less about the London Lasers back in 1990 and probably although it was never stated flat out wanted it to fail. That would be different now.

Thirty years ago a lot of people in the local soccer community were skeptical that a team like the Lasers were really any better than top local amateur teams like the White Eagles (and rumours of what happened when the Lasers tried playing against teams like that in practice games didn't help) because the funding wasn't there to be genuinely full-time professional. That would be different now by the looks of what has happened so far with CanPL.

Times have changed but there is reason to look at on a historic example. The cluster didn't work then and just because we're 30 years on and soccer is more mainstream doesn't mean that 5-10 teams on the same highway is a smart idea. Just because PB and DC are saying it doesn't mean it works (much like 8pm starts).

You mention funding, which I agree is different, but other than MediaPro we don't really know anything and that while planned for 10 years could end early much like it did for the original XFL or NWSL. I'd also add the CPL might not be full-time for all talent, some guys salaries from what I've heard are pretty low.

10 minutes ago, Pottsy3 said:

While I understand many of your concerns about clustering southern Ontario, the population cannot be understated. The one guarantee I know, is that any market will not last if there are no fans. If Niagara is even the slightest of possibilities, surely we should prepare by identifying interest in the region. The largest concern with a fanbase such as York, is that it seems the club had to start the supporters group as opposed to fans rallying. With no precedent of supporters, season ticket sales were slow and somewhat concerning at the start (although I will applaud the Generation XI supporters that I saw at the inaugural match). Organically establishing supporters group will allow these clustered markets to succeed.

I do agree that organic would be better than artificial. If the CPL plan is to go into markets without a noticeable demand, like it did with York and to some extent is doing with Montreal, it would be better to avoid it. I understand going into some places without it (GTA) because it is helpful to be in major markets but doing so in a location that results in >2500 crowds on the reg isn't good.

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1 hour ago, Ozzie_the_parrot said:

Niagara is a long drive from the GTA and doesn't deserve to be bracketed in with a Peel region team when it comes to arguments about being in TFC's shadow. Even Durham region is far enough out that the Oshawa Generals draw well in junior hockey in a way that doesn't happen when people try to make junior hockey fly in Mississauga.

It's not about TFC's shadow, it's about demand for a professional soccer team in those local communities and the perception of relying on third tier markets in a national league this early. The league should be focusing on other markets within Canada that cement the national (not regional) footprint of the league, before going to regional route.

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4 minutes ago, The Real Marc said:

It's not about TFC's shadow, it's about demand for a professional soccer team in those local communities and the perception of relying on third tier markets in a national league this early. The league should be focusing on other markets within Canada that cement the national (not regional) footprint of the league, before going to regional route.

this

one of the things many have talked about is the league needs to not let itself be seen as minor league in order to work. targeting dominant markets outside of ontario, even if smaller than many ontario ones, ultimately does more for that image than a flood of 7 teams in southern ontario.

while you can cite europe as a counter, you've got to remember the market here. less than 3500 people turned in the cpl's most largest market for the debut of the team. you can blame traffic for some of that but there are still real obstacles for the cpl and perception is one of them.

once they get ottawa and maybe a second gta team, i do think the cpl needs to avoid having more than 25% of its 16 by 2026 teams being based in southern ontario.

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Posted (edited)
30 minutes ago, The Real Marc said:

...and the perception of relying on third tier markets in a national league this early...

Halifax and Victoria? I suspect what you guys want is a relatively small league playing in large stadiums with big budgets that tries to rival MLS and ultimately encourage/force TFC, the Impact and Whitecaps to return to the domestic Canadian fold. Going back as far as shortly after the announcement of the league after the CSA AGM two years ago Paul Beirne has been peddling a vision that would eventually involve markets like St John's, Sherbrooke, Niagara region, Saskatoon and Kelowna w/ Penticton. David Clanachan has also talked up the 200k market angle and has even pointed to Burnley as an example of how relatively small cities smaller than that can have relatively large soccer clubs overseas. Hope their serious about it and it works.

Edited by Ozzie_the_parrot

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20 minutes ago, Ozzie_the_parrot said:

Halifax and Victoria? I suspect what you guys want is a relatively small league playing in large stadiums with big budgets that tries to rival MLS and ultimately encourage/force TFC, the Impact and Whitecaps to return to the domestic Canadian fold. Going back as far as shortly after the announcement of the league after the CSA AGM two years ago Paul Beirne has been peddling a vision that would eventually involve markets like St John's, Sherbrooke, Niagara region, Saskatoon and Kelowna w/ Penticton. David Clanachan has also talked up the 200k market angle and has even pointed to Burnley as an example of how relatively small cities smaller than that can have relatively large soccer clubs overseas. Hope their serious about it and it works.

halifax is a dominant market on the east coast and victoria got the league into the b.c. market. there's a difference between them and the ontario ones we are discussing as are st. john's and saskatoon.

no one is pushing an mls rival. we're talking about going after markets that fit with the plan of expanding soccer in canada and avoiding a relience on flooding southern ontario and having 9 of 16 teams being based there, when you've had past leagues that have done it fail and you directly enter competition media wise with mlse with at least 2 of the markets frequently discussed in addition to 2 of the founding clubs.

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8 minutes ago, matty said:

halifax is a dominant market on the east coast and victoria got the league into the b.c. market. there's a difference between them and the ontario ones we are discussing as are st. john's and saskatoon....

The most obvious difference is that London, Niagara region and K/W all have larger metro populations than Halifax, Victoria, St John's and Saskatoon.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_census_metropolitan_areas_and_agglomerations_in_Canada

and are not that far off the likes of Winnipeg and Quebec City in that regard. 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Ozzie_the_parrot said:

The most obvious difference is that London, Niagara region and K/W all have larger metro populations than Halifax, Victoria, St John's and Saskatoon.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_census_metropolitan_areas_and_agglomerations_in_Canada

and are not that far off the likes of Winnipeg and Quebec City in that regard. 

dude you ignored a massive point, which i very clearly stated, which is the difference in terms of the nature of the cities to their surrounding locations. regionally halifax, saskatoon, and st. john's are more dominant to their provinces than london, niagara, and kw are to ontario, as they are either capitals or economic centres for their provinces.

also with regards to victoria, you're ignoring that it's part of the vancouver-victoria media market, the 3rd largest in canada.

you're arguing that people should not be concerned of the cpl loading up southern ontario for 2026 despite history, the image, and the coverage being to regionalized.

Edited by matty

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A city like London has its own media outlets separate from Toronto's and dominates a wider hinterland in southwestern Ontario that has a larger population than several of the smaller provinces. Toronto isn't the centre of the universe to the entire province of Ontario. A lot of people in London seldom go there and have relatively little interest in its sports teams. That gets even stronger once you get to Windsor where most people gravitate more towards Detroit on sports and even have a bit of a midwestern American sounding accent.

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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, Ozzie_the_parrot said:

A city like London has its own media outlets separate from Toronto's and dominates a wider hinterland in southwestern Ontario that has a larger population than several of the smaller provinces. Toronto isn't the centre of the universe to the entire province of Ontario. A lot of people in London seldom go there and have relatively little interest in its sports teams. That gets even stronger once you get to Windsor where most people gravitate more towards Detroit on sports and even have a bit of a midwestern American sounding accent.

it's not just having an interest in toronto sports, it's also industry and infrastructure. you mention media in london where most of the television comes from other cities (those being toronto, hamilton. there are reasons why people are hesitant on this idea of 40% of the league being based in ontario.

Edited by matty

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BBTB is right.  It’s about a media, business and community centre of gravity to be a tier 1 team in the market. 

Hamilton is near Toronto but is it’s own city, distinct from Toronto.

Halifax is the centre of gravity for the whole maritimes.

Niagara has a hard time being cohesive because Niagara Falls, Welland and St Catherines have separate civic pride from each other to an extent.  

In Southern Ontario outside of Toronto and Hamilton IMO the 3 biggest centres are London, KW and Windsor.  They each have their own identity that’s not Toronto and dominate their area.  

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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, baulderdash77 said:

BBTB is right.  It’s about a media, business and community centre of gravity to be a tier 1 team in the market. 

Hamilton is near Toronto but is it’s own city, distinct from Toronto.

Halifax is the centre of gravity for the whole maritimes.

Niagara has a hard time being cohesive because Niagara Falls, Welland and St Catherines have separate civic pride from each other to an extent.  

In Southern Ontario outside of Toronto and Hamilton IMO the 3 biggest centres are London, KW and Windsor.  They each have their own identity that’s not Toronto and dominate their area.  

They have a weird situation in that while separate, they are somewhat dependent on Toronto and Hamilton in relation to media which is a big thing. Realistically it might be safer to avoid the 3, or at least 2 of them, until after the CPL reaches 16 teams, if the league reaches that milestone it will likely be able to move more freely with expansion without impacting its image.

Also just a sight correction to your comment, Ottawa is also Southern Ontario. If one of those markets enters it's as the 4th or 5th team in the region (assuming there is something to the GTA team rumour)

also not bbtb cause he'd say let tfc windsor in

Edited by matty

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Posted (edited)

I don't want an MLS. TO, Mtl, and Van can stay there.  I want a league that's truly national and is close to truly professional and relatively, if possible, even in resources and support.  I want a league where 2500-3000 is the floor attendance we can expect for each club, not the max. We couldn't convince the team in the country's sixth (?) largest city to ditch their hokey pokey league for the Can PL.  Three of the seven teams don't have real shirt sponsors.

Where will the franchise fees come from?  The investment?  The stadium or upgrades?  The sponsorship?  The resources for multiple years of losses? Where will the interest in a mid-week match between Penticton and Windsor come from?  What happens to the league's national profile and coverage if one of the non-ON teams goes kaput?

I get that everyone wants a team in their town.  It's understandable, and endearing. And maybe London is actually one that sorta works - once Ottawa, the major places in the Prairies and Québec and the east are taken.  But if, early on in its life, our national league needs places with the limited financial resources of a Windsor or Oshawa, or the weak regional and media identity of a KW or Niagara we are being short sighted and unstrategic - or are up the creek.

A league with 40-50% of the teams from one isolated area is a regional league with western and eastern outposts.

Edited by The Real Marc

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14 minutes ago, The Real Marc said:

I don't want an MLS. TO, Mtl, and Van can stay there.  I want a league that's truly national and is close to truly professional and relatively, if possible, even in resources and support.  I want a league where 2500-3000 is the floor attendance we can expect for each club, not the max. We couldn't convince the team in the country's sixth (?) largest city to ditch their hokey pokey league for the Can PL.  Three of the seven teams don't have real shirt sponsors.

Where will the franchise fees come from?  The investment?  The stadium or upgrades?  The sponsorship?  The resources for multiple years of losses? Where will the interest in a mid-week match between Penticton and Windsor come from?  What happens to the league's national profile and coverage if one of the non-ON teams goes kaput?

I get that everyone wants a team in their town.  It's understandable, and endearing. And maybe London is actually one that sorta works - once Ottawa, the major places in the Prairies and Québec and the east are taken.  But if, early on in its life, our national league needs places with the limited financial resources of a Windsor or Oshawa, or the weak regional and media identity of a KW or Niagara we are being short sighted and unstrategic - or are up the creek.

A league with 40-50% of the teams from one isolated area is a regional league with western and eastern outposts.

Niagara weak regional and media identity lol am I missing something about Niagara? Pretty sure its known world wide, while most people outside of Canada don't know what  or where Saskatchewan is. 

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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, KW519 said:

Niagara weak regional and media identity lol am I missing something about Niagara? Pretty sure its known world wide, while most people outside of Canada don't know what  or where Saskatchewan is. 

Niagara Falls is globally known as is Moosejaw, Saskatchewan...cause it sounds funny

Edited by matty

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