Home NASL & USL More NASL & USL NASL Commissioner: “We’d love to honour the FIFA windows,” but it isn’t feasible for league… yet

NASL Commissioner: “We’d love to honour the FIFA windows,” but it isn’t feasible for league… yet


This week, the Canadian national team has three NASL players on its roster the upcoming World Cup qualifiers. In a media conference call Tuesday, NASL Commissioner Bill Peterson made sure to emphasize that more than 60 full internationals are now signed to deals with NASL teams.

But, many of those players will miss league games that conflict with the international window. The three Canadians will need to race back from a midweek game in Mexico and (maybe) prepare for their NASL season openers that coming weekend. In 2015, FC Edmonton’s season was affected by the loss of Lance Laing to Jamaican national-team duty; the club won just one game out of the 10 he missed.

So, with more internationals on NASL rosters, the question arises: Should the NASL break for the international windows?

Peterson said the matter has been debated at the league and ownership level. This year, the NASL will play through the windows, but he said it’s a policy that “we are not locked into.”

“We’d love to honour the FIFA windows,” Peterson said.

But, the issue is that if the league was to make room for the windows, he said it would need to start the season in March, and because of the risk of cold, snowy weather in northern cities, it’s not something the league wants to do.

“We are not comfortable with that yet, from a development standpoint or a stadium standpoint.”

As well, making room for FIFA dates would mean more midweek games, and Peterson said that would create more occurrences where players could face stretches of three games in eight days. And that creates concerns about wear and tear on the players.

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One Comment

  1. Scottish Teeth

    March 22, 2016 at 1:20 pm

    I totally understand the apprehension surrounding Edmonton and Ottawa games in March, but maybe they should be considered after all. Canadian fans come out for Canadian rules football in late October and November, when conditions are even worse, and there’s a significant difference here. Colder temperatures are much easier to stomach in spring than in autumn. -5C in Oct is chilly and depressing. -5C in March, after dealing with much worse in Jan & Feb, has people walking around in shorts and flip flops.
    And it’s not the end of the season either, after many fans have had their fill of the game. Bored after the long winter, football supporters might be anxious to see their team once more in action, particularly knowing the cold weather gives their home team a significant advantage.
    Northern Europe has played in the snow. They’re not scared of it. Maybe we shouldn’t be either.

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