Canadian Soccer League championship final

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Canadian Soccer League championship
Current championsScarborough SC (2nd title)
Most successful club(s)Toronto Croatia (6 times)
2022 season

The Canadian Soccer League championship final or CSL Championship is the post-season match of the Canadian Soccer League (CSL) and is the successor to the CNSL Championship.[1] The winner is crowned champion in the same manner as in other North American sports leagues (i.e. via a playoff following a regular season). This differs from other top soccer leagues around the world which consider the club with the most points at the end of the season to be the sole champion. It is a Non-FIFA championship match that was previously sanctioned by the Canadian Soccer Association (CSA) but is now affiliated with the Soccer Federation of Canada (SFC).[2]

The league hosted its inaugural championship, on October 14, 1998. The CSL Championship is traditionally held in early October. Toronto Croatia is the most successful team, winning a record sixth cup in 2015.

Throughout its history, the championship has had several title sponsors from the Primus Cup in 2000, the Rogers Cup from 2001 to 2009, and the Givova Cup from 2010 onwards.


In the initial years, the championship finals were dominated by Toronto Olympians, and Ottawa Wizards, who had financial support from corporations such as Coffee Time, and Oz Optics Ltd.[3][4] While St. Catharines Wolves, and Toronto Croatia two well-established former Canadian National Soccer League (CNSL) clubs were the prominent challengers in the early years. The inaugural championship was contested between the 1997 CNSL champions St. Catharines and Toronto Olympians with the Wolves securing the title in a penalty shootout.[5][6] St. Catharines would conclude their golden decade in 2001 with their second championship acquired against Toronto Supra.[7][8] While the Olympians appeared in the first three CPSL Championship finals, but only managed one victory in 1999 against Toronto Croatia.[5] The Croatians would avenge their defeat the following season after defeating the Olympians 2–0.[9]

In 2000, the championship received its first title sponsorship from Primus and witnessed the emergence of the Ottawa Wizards after the league's major expansion run in 2001.[10] The heavily invested Wizards would dominate the next three seasons with an eventual championship in 2002.[11] After a series of disputes with the CPSL board of directors, Ottawa withdrew from the playoff competition after securing an undefeated regular season in 2003.[12][13] As a result, creating an opportunity for various clubs to contend for the championship with the Brampton Hitmen claiming the title. After the decline and departure of the Olympians, Wizards, and Wolves a shift occurred with Croatia and York Region Shooters (then as the Vaughan Shooters, later as Italia Shooters) achieving a powerhouse status as both champions and top contenders with the Serbian White Eagles as the prominent challengers. The reemergence of the White Eagles re-sparked the traditional rivalry between Croatia and Serbia, which caused the 2007 championship final to be divided into two matches to segregate the fans.[14][15]

Toronto Croatia currently holds the record amount of six championships and holds the distinction of being the first club to successfully defend the title in two consecutive seasons from 2014 till 2015. As the league expanded beyond the Greater Toronto Area and Ontario border a television agreement was reached with Rogers TV, which granted the company naming rights to the championship.[16] In 2010, Givova became the title sponsor for the league and championship.[17] Meanwhile, another milestone was achieved by Trois-Rivières Attak the farm team to the Montreal Impact as it became the first Quebec club to capture the championship in 2009 after defeating Serbia in a 3-2 penalty shootout.[18] Other single champions have included the likes of the Oakville Blue Devils, Brantford Galaxy, and SC Waterloo Region.[19][20][21] In 2014, York Region became the second club in the league's history to produce a perfect season followed by the Toronto Olympians since the 1999 season.[22][23]


After the regular season, the top eight finishers qualify for the play-offs. Those then consist of quarter-finals, semi-finals, and the championship final. Except for the 2007 final, which was contested over two legs, the final is played like one match only.[14]


The winner of the Canadian Soccer League's CSL Championship determines the season's league champion. The playoff tournament is organized by the league after the regular season in a format similar to other North American professional sports leagues.

The first CSL Championship final was played on October 14, 1998.[24] As of 2017, the record for the most championships is held by Toronto Croatia with six cup titles.[25] The record for the most championships lost is held by the Serbian White Eagles, Scarborough SC, and York Region Shooters, who lost the game three times during their history.


Season Date Champions Final Score Runners-up Venue
1998 October 14 St. Catharines Wolves 2–2 † Toronto Olympians Centennial Park Stadium
1999 October 2 Toronto Olympians 2–0 Toronto Croatia Oshawa Civic Stadium
2000 October 1 Toronto Croatia 2–1 Toronto Olympians Cove Road Stadium
2001 October 14 St. Catharines Wolves 1–0 Toronto Supra Club Roma Stadium
2002 October 20 Ottawa Wizards 2–0 North York Astros Esther Shiner Stadium
2003 October 5 Brampton Hitmen 1–0 Vaughan Shooters Cove Road Stadium
2004 October 11 Toronto Croatia 4–0 Vaughan Shooters Victoria Park Stadium
2005 November 10 Oakville Blue Devils 2–1 * Vaughan Shooters Esther Shiner Stadium
2006 October 15 Italia Shooters 1–0 Serbian White Eagles Esther Shiner Stadium
2007 October 27
October 28
Toronto Croatia 4–1
Serbian White Eagles Esther Shiner Stadium
2008 October 26 Serbian White Eagles 2–2 † Trois-Rivieres Attak Esther Shiner Stadium
2009 October 24 Trois-Rivieres Attak 0–0 † Serbian White Eagles BMO Field
2010 October 31 Brantford Galaxy 3–0 Hamilton Croatia Centennial Park Stadium
2011 October 29 Toronto Croatia 1–0 Capital City F.C. Centennial Park Stadium
2012 October 27 Toronto Croatia 1–0 Montreal Impact Academy Centennial Park Stadium
2013 November 3 SC Waterloo Region 3–1 Kingston FC Kalar Sports Park
2014 October 26 York Region Shooters 1–1 † Toronto Croatia Esther Shiner Stadium
2015 October 25 Toronto Croatia 1–0 SC Waterloo Region Warrior Field
2016 October 30 Serbian White Eagles 2–1 * Hamilton City SC Birchmount Stadium
2017 September 30 York Region Shooters 1–1 † Scarborough SC Birchmount Stadium
2018 October 13 FC Vorkuta 1–1 † Scarborough SC Centennial Park Stadium
2019 October 26 Scarborough SC 2–0 FC Ukraine United Centennial Park Stadium
2020 October 17 FC Vorkuta 2–1 Scarborough SC Racco Park
2021 November 7 Scarborough SC 4–1 FC Vorkuta Centennial Park Stadium
* Match went to extra time
Match decided by a penalty shootout after overtime
Bold Team won the Regular Season Champions
Italics Team won the Open Canada Cup

Performance by Club[edit]

Club Champions Runner-Up Winning Years Losing Years
Toronto Croatia 6 2 2000, 2004, 2007, 2011, 2012, 2015 1999, 2014
York Region Shooters 3 3 2006, 2014, 2017 2003, 2004, 2005
St. Catharines Wolves 2 1998, 2001
Serbian White Eagles 2 3 2008, 2016 2006, 2007, 2009
FC Vorkuta 2 1 2018, 2020 2021
Scarborough SC 2 3 2019, 2021 2017, 2018. 2020
Toronto Olympians (defunct) 1 2 1999 1998, 2000
Trois-Rivieres Attak (defunct) 1 1 2009 2008
SC Waterloo Region 1 1 2013 2015
Brampton Stallions (defunct) 1 2003
Brampton City United 1 2005
Brantford Galaxy SC 1 2010
Ottawa Wizards (defunct) 1 2002
SC Toronto 1 2001
North York Astros 1 2002
Hamilton Croatia 1 2010
Capital City F.C. 1 2011
Montreal Impact Academy 1 2012
Kingston FC 1 2013
Hamilton City SC 1 2016


  1. ^ "Who We Are – Canadian Soccer League". Retrieved February 10, 2020.
  2. ^ "Canadian Soccer League joins Newly-Formed Soccer Federation". February 13, 2010. Archived from the original on December 12, 2013. Retrieved February 13, 2010.
  3. ^ "About the Ottawa Wizards". February 2, 2004. Archived from the original on February 2, 2004. Retrieved January 8, 2018.
  4. ^ Bailey, David (May 13, 1998). "CPSL Ready To Go - Major sponsors on board as well". Canada Kicks.
  5. ^ a b Jose, Colin (2001). On-Side - 125 Years of Soccer in Ontario. Vaughan, Ontario: Ontario Soccer Association and Soccer Hall of Fame and Museum. p. 117.
  6. ^ Rogers, Alison (October 14, 1998). "A perfect ending". The St Catharines Standard.
  7. ^ Rogers, Alison (October 14, 2001). "Miracle at Roma Park". The St Catherine Standard.
  8. ^ "Roma triumphs". Toronto Star. October 15, 2001. p. C11.
  9. ^ Rumleski, Kathy (October 2, 2000). "Croatia bags Primus Cup by upsetting Olympians". The London Free Press.
  10. ^ Dalla Costa, Morris (September 10, 2002). "Canada Cup bringing high-quality soccer". The London Free Press.
  11. ^ "CPSL 2002 Awards". The Ottawa Citizen. October 23, 2002. p. 38. Retrieved June 22, 2020.
  12. ^ "CPSL - Canadian Professional Soccer League". November 19, 2003. Archived from the original on November 19, 2003. Retrieved June 22, 2020.
  13. ^ "Wizards withdraw from league tournament". The Ottawa Citizen. October 4, 2003. p. 68. Retrieved June 22, 2020.
  14. ^ a b Kelly, Cathal (October 25, 2007). "CSL keeps Balkan fans apart". Toronto Star.
  15. ^ "Local Soccer Playoff "Segregation" Sparks Controversy - CityNews Toronto". CityNews. October 26, 2007. Retrieved June 24, 2020.
  16. ^ "2001 - Aug 3 - CPSL Launches TV Soccer Show". February 28, 2002. Archived from the original on February 28, 2002. Retrieved April 18, 2018.
  17. ^ "May 5, 2010 CSL pre season press conference (from CSL web site)". Retrieved April 18, 2018.
  18. ^ Gaulthier, Louis-Simon (October 26, 2009). "L'Attak champion | Louis-Simon Gauthier | Sports". Le Nouvelliste. Archived from the original on May 21, 2017. Retrieved June 22, 2020.
  19. ^ "Blue Devils' Gamble pays off in CPSL final". Burlington Post. October 12, 2005. Retrieved June 22, 2020.
  20. ^ "Galaxy shines in CSL title victory". The Hamilton Spectator. November 1, 2010. ISSN 1189-9417. Retrieved June 22, 2020.
  21. ^ "SC Waterloo wins CSL championship". The Record. November 4, 2013. Retrieved June 22, 2020.
  22. ^ Hayakawa, Michael (October 27, 2014). "York Region Shooters win Canadian Soccer League title in penalty kicks". The Vaughan Citizen. Retrieved April 18, 2018.
  23. ^ "CPSL 1999 Award Winners". Retrieved April 18, 2018.
  24. ^ "Canada - Canadian Professional/Premier Soccer League II". Retrieved April 18, 2018.
  25. ^ "Canada - Canadian Soccer League II". Retrieved April 18, 2018.

External links[edit]