Vancouver FC cut Langara Falcons soccer players
Three members of the men's soccer team tried out for the new professional team, though none made the squad.
By Cala Ali
The three Langara players who accepted an invitation to try out for Vancouver FC failed to make the grade.
Athos Michellepis de Siqueira, a second-year kinesiology student and winger for the Langara Falcons, was part of tryouts for Vancouver FC. They are the newest addition to the Canadian Premier League, a start-up division that debuted only last year, becoming the country’s first professional league.
Vancouver FC, who became the Canadian Premier League’s eighth team, will play their first match against Victoria’s Pacific FC on April 15. The club announced their new home stadium on Feb. 9.
Siqueira, an international student from São Paulo, Brazil, said Vancouver FC is “a huge step forward” from the current level of professional soccer in Vancouver.
“Having another team that competes in a different league than the Whitecaps is very good,” he said. “It’s going to help a lot of players who want to increase or improve their level as well.”
Last season’s Langara men’s soccer team captain Connor Thompson said the creation of another professional team in Vancouver brings new options for prospective players to develop at a high level.
“Canada doesn’t have usually as many opportunities as different parts of the world,” he said. “So, it’s definitely a cool opportunity for people or even younger kids to look up to and get to a goal to strive to.”
Vancouver’s second pro team
Vancouver FC’s assistant coach Niall Thompson also emphasized the impact that a second professional team will have on Vancouver’s soccer community.
“Right now, there’s the Vancouver Whitecaps and they are the only professional team within B.C.,” he said. “This has now opened up another pathway for a young player.”
The head coach of the Langara men’s soccer team Marc Rizzardo is hopeful that establishing relationships with Vancouver FC can show students at Langara what they can accomplish while playing sports and studying.
“This is the first time some of these players have been able to go out to these teams,” Rizzardo said. “And our connection with VFC has been really positive so far.”
Although none of the Langara players were selected to join Vancouver FC, both teams say they will continue working collectively to create a strong, long-lasting relationship.
Falcons midfielder David Rodriguez Zegarra and defender Wizaso Chavula, who also tried out, were cut in the first round of trials, while Siqueira made it to the second round. Siqueira said that over 120 players took part in the highly competitive tryouts. Zegarra and Chavula were unavailable for comment.
Midfielder and 2022 PACWEST player of the year Takumi Ota also was invited to the tryouts, though he turned the opportunity down to focus on his studies.