2017 Canadian Championship winners Toronto FC two matches away from FIFA Club World Cup
Canada Soccer – The Concacaf Champions League Final kicks off on Canadian soil for only the second time as Toronto FC face Club Deportivo Guadalajara in the first leg at BMO Field on TSN2 starting at 20:15 EDT on 17 April. Toronto FC qualified for the tournament as 2017 Canadian Championship winners defeating Montréal Impact on a 90+5’ goal from George Gross Trophy winner (representative of Canadian Championship MVP) Sebastian Giovinco in front of 26,539 fans last June.
Toronto FC join Montréal Impact as only the second Canadian team to play in a Concacaf Champions League final after moving past Montréal’s 2015 opponent Club de Fútbol América in the Semi-Final. The Concacaf Champions League winner will move onto the FIFA Club World Cup to play confederation champions from UEFA, CONMEBOL, AFC, CAF, OFC, and the host league champions from the UAE Pro-League as the tournament will be hosted by the UAE 12-22 December.
“We wish Toronto FC all the best as they look to extend their historic 2017 season with a fourth trophy and a chance to play against the world’s elite clubs,” said Canada Soccer President Steven Reed. “The Canadian Championship winners have consistently produced extraordinary results in the Concacaf Champions League and Toronto FC following on Montréal Impact’s appearance as a Canadian-based finalist is another example of Canada as a leading soccer nation.”
Canadian Internationals Jonathan Osorio, Ashtone Morgan, Tosaint Ricketts, and Jordan Hamilton have all played a role in Toronto’s historic Champions League run. Osorio is tied for the goal scoring lead with three goals – all of which have provided Toronto with the opportunity to move forward in the competition – including a late backheel winner in front of his hometown fans to send Toronto FC to Monterrey with a 2:1 opening leg victory in the Quarter-Final. Ricketts and Osorio’s link up in the 12’ of the Semi-Final second leg proved the difference in that round after Morgan scored in the opening leg.
Toronto FC’s 2017 Canadian Championship victory marked their sixth Canadian title and fifth qualification to Concacaf Champions League. Since the debut of both competitions in 2008, three Canadian winners have reached the Quarter-final stage or further in Concacaf Champions League: Toronto FC once (Semi-finals in 2011-12), Montréal twice (Quarter-finals in 2008-09 and Grand Final in 2014-15), and Vancouver Whitecaps FC once (Semi-finals in 2016-17).
In 2018, the Canadian Championship will expand to include the champions from Quebec’s Première ligue de soccer du Québec (PLSQ) and Ontario’s League1 Ontario. The competition kicks off in June with the champion and 2019 Concacaf Champions League entrant to be determined 15 August.
2018 Canadian Championship Schedule (home team listed first)
First Qualifying Round (1QR)
6 June 2018 AS Blainville v Oakville Blue Devils
13 June 2018 Oakville Blue Devils v AS Blainville
Second Qualifying Round (2QR)
20 June 2018 Winner 1QR v Ottawa Fury FC
27 June 2018 Ottawa Fury FC v Winner 1QR
18 July 2018 Winner 2QR v Toronto FC
18 July 2018 Impact Montreal FC v Vancouver Whitecaps FC
25 July 2018 Toronto FC v Winner 2QR
25 July 2018 Vancouver Whitecaps FC v Impact Montreal FC
8 August 2018 Winner Semi-Final v Winner Semi-Final
15 August 2018 Winner Semi-Final v Winner Semi-Final
About the Canadian Championship
- The Canadian Championship is Canada Soccer’s highest domestic professional soccer competition and it is the sole qualification route for Canadian professional clubs into Concacaf Champions League and onto the FIFA Club World Cup.
- The current champions are Toronto FC who have won the tournament six times.
- Canadian content is a focus of the competition and since 2017 the competition regulations state that each team must field a minimum of three Canadian starters for each match.
- The Voyageurs Cup has been awarded to the Canadian Championship winner since 2008. Created by the Voyageurs Canadian Supporters group, the trophy represents Canadian fans’ commitment to the game in our country.
- The George Gross Memorial Trophy recognizes the Canadian Championship’s most valuable player. The Trophy is named after the late George Gross, a respected journalist and honoured member of the Soccer Hall of Fame. Last year’s winner was Sebastian Giovinco of Toronto FC.
- In 2018, the competition will feature six clubs from four different leagues: Toronto FC (MLS), Impact Montreal FC (MLS), and Vancouver Whitecaps FC (MLS) all earn automatic berths to the semi-final round. Ottawa Fury FC (USL) earns a second qualifying round berth. In addition, the champions of Ontario and Quebec’s top senior club competitions, League1 Ontario and Première ligue de soccer du Québec, earn entry to the opening first qualifying round.
- Since 2008, three Canadian winners have reached the Quarter-final stage or further in Concacaf Champions League: Toronto FC once (Semi-finals in 2011-12), Impact Montréal FC twice (Quarter-finals in 2008-09 and Grand Final in 2014-15), and Vancouver Whitecaps FC (Semi-finals 2016-17).
- In 2018, the Concacaf Champions League format will change to a single-elimination tournament with the winner qualifying for the 2018 FIFA Club World Cup. As Canadian Championship winners in 2017, Toronto FC have been drawn against Colorado Rapids in the opening round.
Fans can follow along during the competition using #CanChamp on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
For more information on the competition, visit www.canadianchampionship.ca
Corporate Communications | Gestionnaire, Communications corporatives
m. +1 613.299.1587
Women’s National Teams Program | Programme de l’équipe nationale féminine
m. +1 613.406.4986