|Full name||Forge Football Club|
|Founded||May 6, 2017|
|Stadium||Tim Hortons Field, Hamilton, Ontario|
|League||Canadian Premier League|
|Spring 2019||Canadian Premier League, 2nd|
Forge Football Club is a Canadian professional soccer club based in Hamilton, Ontario. The club competes in the Canadian Premier League in the inaugural 2019 season and plays its home games at Tim Hortons Field.
Hamilton was linked to a professional soccer team as early as June 2013, when reports first emerged of a professional soccer league launching in Canada. Hamilton Tiger-Cats owner Bob Young was part of a group of investors, predominantly from the Canadian Football League, working with the Canadian Soccer Association and president Victor Montagliani.
In February 2016, the ownership group sought permission from Hamilton City Council to erect a dome over the Tim Hortons Field playing surface to allow for year-long activity, including soccer. When the Canadian Premier League was officially announced, it was revealed that Hamilton's club would be the flagship franchise.
On May 6, 2017, Hamilton was one of two cities accepted by the Canadian Soccer Association for professional club membership when the Canadian Premier League was unanimously approved.
Forge FC was officially unveiled as the league's sixth team on July 12, 2018. The club revealed its crest, colours and branding, as well as its place in the league for the 2019 launch season. The name was chosen to represent city's industrial heritage and forging ahead building its future.
On October 1, 2018, Forge FC announced that Bobby Smyrniotis would be its first head coach and technical director. On November 29, 2018, Kyle Bekker and Chris Nanco were announced by the club as its first signings. This announcement coincided with a much larger unveiling event that consisted of each team announcing its initial player signings.
The club qualified for the 2019 CONCACAF League after defeating Valor FC 2–0 on June 16, 2019. In their debut, Forge defeated Antigua GFC 2–1 on aggregate in the two-leg series to advance to the Round of 16. Forge FC was eliminated with a 4–2 aggregate score, against Honduran club Olimpia, in the round of 16.
The club will play its home games at Tim Hortons Field, a 23,218-seat multi-purpose stadium stadium which had primarily been used for Canadian football. The capacity will be reduced to 10,000 spectators to provide an intimate setting for supporters.
Crest and colours
The crest is designed to represent both an 'H' for Hamilton and an 'F' for Forge. The open space in the lettering represents a waterfall, and the three orange sparks represent Forge FC's city, community and club.
The club's secondary crest is a hammer with the 'H' of the primary crest at the head, with six stripes on the handle to represent the six municipalities amalgamated in 2001 to form the new City of Hamilton: Dundas, Ancaster, Stoney Creek, Flamborough, Glanbrook and, of course, Hamilton.
The official club colours are orange, grey, and white (branded by the club as "spark orange," "platinum steel," and "waterfall white"). These colours symbolize the sparks that come from the strike of a hammer, the local manufacturing industry, and the area's many waterfalls.
To celebrate Hamilton's founding date of June 9, 1846, Forge FC will wear a black and gold uniform for the first home game in June. The city's traditional sporting colours have been worn by the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, the Hamilton Bulldogs, and the Hamilton Tigers.
The Barton St. Battalion supporters group was founded in February 2016 after details of the Canadian Premier League and a Hamilton club emerged. At the club's official launch, supporters of the group sat behind the stage and were revealed as the first 75 founding members.
Forge FC has a rivalry with York9 FC, the only other Ontario-based team in the league. On January 29, 2019, the Canadian Premier League announced that the inaugural match of the league would be Forge hosting York9 in the 905 Derby on April 27, 2019. The match ended in a 1–1 draw.
Players and staff
|3||Midfielder||Elimane Oumar Cissé||Senegal|
- As of March 4, 2019
|Head coach||Bobby Smyrniotis|
|Assistant coach||Peter Reynders|
- As of October 6, 2019
|Bobby Smyrniotis||Canada||October 1, 2018 – present||31||18||7||6||58.06|
|Year||League||Regular season||Position||CPL Finals||Canadian Championship||CONCACAF League||League attendance||Top scorer||Ref|
|2019||CPL||28||17||5||6||45||26||56||2nd||TBD||2nd||Qualified||Second qualifying round||Round of 16||6,588||Tristan Borges||12|
- Scores and results list Forge FC's goal tally first.
|2019||CONCACAF League||Preliminary round||Antigua GFC||2–1||0–0||2–1|
|Round of 16||Olimpia||1–0||1–4||2–4|
- expandable to 23,218
- "Co-Founder Bob Young & Forge FC to Celebrate Inaugural CPL Match With Soccer Unites Hamilton". forgefc.canpl.ca. Retrieved March 6, 2019.
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- Milton, Steve (October 1, 2018). "Opinion | Bobby Smyrniotis named first Forge FC coach". TheSpec.com. Retrieved October 1, 2018.
- "Kyle Bekker, Chris Nanco reunite with Bobby Smyrniotis at Forge FC". Canadian Premier League. November 29, 2018. Retrieved November 29, 2018.
- Veenstra, Michael (June 16, 2019). "Forge FC get turnaround win; Qualify for CONCACAF League". Retrieved June 24, 2019.
- "Forge FC advances to CONCACAF League Round of 16 after win over Antigua". www.sportsnet.ca. Canadian Press. Retrieved August 9, 2019.
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- Milton, Steve (July 12, 2018). "Forge FC's name a nod to city's past and future". The Hamilton Spectator. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
- "Emblem Inspiration". forgefc.canpl.ca. Forge FC. July 12, 2018. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
- O'Connor-Clarke, Charlie (July 12, 2018). "Canadian Premier League unveils Forge FC in Hamilton". Waking The Red. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
- "About Us". bartonbattalion.ca. Barton St Battalion. Retrieved July 12, 2018.
- "Hamilton Event: Watch Live". canpl.ca. Canadian Premier League. July 12, 2018. Retrieved July 16, 2018.
- Bedakian, Armen. "CPL inaugural match: Forge FC hosts York9 FC". canpl.ca. Retrieved February 16, 2019.
- "Canadian Premier League kicks off, marking new era for soccer in Canada". sportsnet.ca. April 27, 2019.
- "Roster". Forge FC. Retrieved August 17, 2019.
- "Forge sign Sigma products Stoddart and Oluwaseun". Canadian Premier League. September 15, 2019. Retrieved September 15, 2019.
- "Forge FC Adds Reynders and Albert to Coaching Staff". forgefc.canpl.ca. Retrieved March 4, 2019.
- "Forge FC beats Antigua GFC in first leg of CONCACAF League match". TSN. Retrieved August 5, 2019.
- "Forge FC vs. Olimpia". concacafleague.com. Retrieved August 24, 2019.