March 23, 2014 (ISN) – The schedule is set for the 2014 Amway Canadian Championship, the national competition featuring the country’s five professional clubs that determines Canada’s representative for the CONCACAF Champions League.
This seventh edition of the championship will see Ottawa Fury FC, Canada’s newest NASL club, and FC Edmonton, play a preliminary knock-out home and away round. The winner, the team that scores the greater aggregate of goals over the two matches, will secure the fourth semi-final place and join the three Canadian MLS clubs, Montreal Impact, Toronto FC and Vancouver Whitecaps FC in the next round.
The three MLS clubs have been seeded according to their final position in league play for 2013, with the winner of the preliminary round entering the competition seeded in fourth place.
2014 Amway Canadian Championship seeding
1. Montreal Impact
2. Vancouver Whitecaps FC
3. Toronto FC
4. Winner of Ottawa Fury FC/FC Edmonton
As per previous years, the semi-final stage of the competition is played on a home and away knock-out format in which the highest ranked team will play at home in the second leg. The team which scores the greater aggregate of goals in the two matches qualifies for the final.
The final will also be played on a home and away basis (two legs). The highest seeded team qualified for the final has the option of deciding which leg it plays at home. Once again, the team that comes on top on aggregate for the two matches is declared champion and earns the right to represent Canada in the 2014-2015 CONCACAF Champions League.
2014 Amway Canadian Championship schedule
(home team listed first)
23 April 2014 Preliminary round – first leg Ottawa Fury FC v FC Edmonton
30 April 2014 Preliminary round – second leg FC Edmonton v Ottawa Fury FC
7 May 2014 Semi Final 1 – first leg
Semi Final 2 – first leg Ottawa Fury FC/FC Edmonton v Montreal Impact
Toronto FC v Vancouver Whitecaps FC
14 May 2014 Semi Final 1 – second leg
Semi Final 2 – second leg Montreal Impact v Ottawa Fury FC/FC Edmonton
Vancouver Whitecaps FC v Toronto FC
28 May 2014 Final – first leg*
4 June 2014 Final – second leg
*this game will be played on 27 May if Vancouver Whitecaps FC plays at home.
Once again this year the Amway Canadian Championship will be broadcast on Sportsnet.
Through the first six editions of the Amway Canadian Championship, Impact Montréal were inaugural champions (2008) followed by Toronto FC who won the Voyageurs Cup in four successive seasons (2009 to 2012), before Impact Montreal won the championship again in 2013. In CONCACAF Champions League, Impact Montréal (2008-09) reached the quarter-final phase while Toronto FC (2011-12) has participated in the semi-final round of continental club championship.
Canada Soccer announces move to new time frame for future Amway Canadian Championships
Canada Soccer announced that its Amway Canadian Championship will move to a new summer time frame starting in 2015. The change, approved by CONCACAF’s Executive Committee at their latest meeting, will require a transition over the next three editions of the competition which will impact the qualification format that determines the Canadian representative in the CONCACAF Champions League.
The 2014 Amway Canadian Championship will be played in its current format and time frame, starting this 23 April in Ottawa, with the winner earning the rights to represent Canada in the 2014/2015 CONCACAF Champions League. This will be the seventh edition of the national competition that features the country’s five professional clubs.
The 2015 edition of the Amway Canadian Championship will shift time frame to be played in July and August, after the completion of the FIFA Women’s World Cup Canada 2015TM and respecting the CONCACAF Gold Cup dates. The champion of the 2015 Amway Canadian Championship will represent Canada in the 2016/2017 CONCACAF Champions League.
Given the revised time frame for the 2015 Championship, the competition will not be played in time to designate the Canadian representative for the 2015/2016 CONCACAF Champions League. As such, it has been agreed with all participating clubs that the Canadian MLS club ranked highest in the combined league points table at the end of the 2014 regular MLS season would be appointed Canadian representative for the 2015/2016 CONCACAF Champions League.
“Canada Soccer recognizes that the transition may be confusing in the short term, but we’re confident it will benefit the competition in the longer term,” said Victor Montagliani, Canada Soccer President. “This new format will allow the Amway Canadian Championship to grow, becoming even more of a Canadian showcase of professional soccer as our sport continue to evolve.”
Starting in 2016 and for subsequent editions, the Amway Canadian Championship will resume its format and be played in the new, more club and fan friendly time frame of June and July, with the winner representing Canada in the following season of the CONCACAF Champions League.
“The move to the new time frame was proposed in response to some of our participating clubs concerns and allows for more flexibility in the competition structure around professionalization of the sport and potential expansion,” added Montagliani. “But more importantly, we believe it will make it a more enjoyable experience for fans across the country.”
Every year, the Amway Canadian Championship pits Canada’s professional clubs – newest member Ottawa Fury FC (NASL), FC Edmonton (NASL), Montreal Impact (MLS), Toronto FC (MLS) and Vancouver Whitecaps FC (MLS) – against each other in a knock-out home and away series to ultimately determine a champion that will lift the Voyageurs Cup and earn the right to represent the country in the CONCACAF Champions League.
Through the first six editions of the Amway Canadian Championship, Montreal Impact were inaugural champions (2008) followed by Toronto FC who won the Voyageurs Cup in four successive seasons (2009 to 2012), before Montreal Impact won the championship again in 2013. In CONCACAF Champions League, Montreal Impact (2008-09) reached the quarter-final phase while Toronto FC (2011-12) has participated in the semi-final round of continental club championship.