FC “Vorkuta” – winner of the regular championship of Canada in football … Stop, who?
The news that the football club Vorkuta from Toronto won the regular season of Canada-2017, passed by almost all sports media. The blog “eleven” eliminates injustice and tells about the Canadian club with a Russian name, for which representatives of seven nationalities play at once.
FC Vorkuta – who are they? h2>
The football club “Vorkuta” was founded in 2008 in Toronto by a group of Russian-speaking football fans. The foundation was laid by two people: Igor Demichev, a local lawyer and general sponsor of the club and Samad Kadyrov, a hammering striker and future captain of the team. By the way, both still actively help Vorkuta: Igor has been the main sponsor of the team for 9 years, and Samad, in addition to financial support and playing for the second team of Vorkuta, manages to respond immediately to incoming e-mail.
With its catching Russian rumor, the club is obliged to the small homeland of its founder – Igor Demichev, who was born and grew up in Vorkuta, emigrated to Canada immediately after graduation.
The Vorkuta logo consists of several iconic elements: in addition to Canadian maple leaves, traditional Toronto flowers and a football ball, there is a barbed wire on the logotype – a tribute to the uneasy history of those strong-willed people who founded the city beyond the Arctic Circle and continue to live there.
North American “Vorkuta” long time acted in various amateur divisions of Canada: sportsmen played both in football, and in futsal, often becoming prize-winners of local competitions.
Over time, the club was recognized by the Russian-speaking community of Toronto and the team began to come more and more players from the countries of the former USSR. At some point, the club had serious ambitions.
A real breakthrough happened in early 2017 – Vorkuta received a semi-professional status and was able to enter the first league of Canada. However, with the application then it was necessary to tinker: “In addition to the financial component, the club needed to get more and more votes from the participants of the league, who in turn, are extremely cautious about any potential newcomer. Nobody wanted to take on the league team-one-year, who will leave the league after the first season. We had to make a 3-year business plan, show bank guarantees about our financial solvency and do a huge amount of paper work. In the end, only two teams out of nine voted against us, “says Samad Kadyrov.
Championship of Canada – how is it even arranged? h2>
Today’s CSL is the third step of the Canadian football pyramid. The League has a semi-professional status, above it are only MLS and NASL – professional leagues, in which teams from both Canada and the United States play.
Due to the closed system, clubs from CSL are not eligible for promotion in the classroom and can not play in international cups under the auspices of CONCACAF. In fact, the Canadian league, in its status and class, resembles the Russian LFL, with the reservation that the league is closed.
However, there are a lot of professional football players here and they are represented mostly by Eastern European legionaries. There is nothing surprising in this, because many teams in the CSL personify a diaspora: the most titled club is called Toronto Croatia, the current champion is Serbian White Eagles, and last year UkraineUnited in the same league. As you can see, FC Vorkuta very organically fits into the general trend.
What is Vorkuta today? h2>
Today’s composition of Vorkuta is very international: the application of the team is attended by representatives of 7 countries at once – from Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, to Israel and Croatia. Especially here stands out the Ukrainian core of the team, consisting of players with experience in the first Ukrainian division: Oleg Kerch was once captain of FC Bukovina, Jaroslav Svorak played for the national youth team of the country, and Alexander Volchkov – champion and winner of the Estonian Cup in the ” Levadia. “
In her first season in CSL, Vorkuta was able to take the first place in the regular season and reach the semifinals of the playoffs, losing there to FC Scarborough in an incredibly draconian duel – the captain of Vorkuta was removed for arguing with the referee, and Sergei Ivlev , the best scorer of the team, after a hard junction with the opponent’s player had to impose 12 stitches and take him to the hospital.
However, if the results and action on the field in “Vorkuta” everything is in order, then with the attendance of home matches, not everything is so happy: “At our games, a man gathers 50-60. We are the only club in the league that left the entrance to our games for free. The home field of the team is Esther Shiner Stadium, located in the center of the Russian-speaking area and we do our best so that on the day off people can diversify their leisure time and visit our games. To this end, we constantly print flyers and distribute them among the local population. “- Samad notes.
Despite the weak interest on the part of the audience, today’s Vorkuta is a self-sufficient club entirely based on the money coming from sponsors: all players are employees of the club with existing contracts, and in addition to the main team, the club has a reserve, amateur and veteran lineups, who are also fighting for high places in their divisions.
The new season of the championship of Canada will start only in February and before its beginning “Vorkuta” will alternate regular trainings with playing futsal. In the near future, Samad and Igor will open the Football Academy of FC Vorkuta for juniors and, of course, win the title of champion of CSL.
What about football in the small homeland of the team? h2>
It would be foolish to write a story about Vorkuta without mentioning how things are with football in the small homeland of the team.
Let’s start with the fact that in Vorkuta, as in the entire republic of Komi, there has never been professional football. But futsal is popular here: in the Super League of the Russian Championship two teams from Komi – Ukhta and New Generation are performing at once. Even Vinny Jones, who visited Vorkuta for the filming of the documentary National Geographics, played football with local boys exclusively in the hall.
However, few people this information can surprise. The average annual temperature in Vorkuta is negative and it is not possible to play football outdoors here on a regular basis. Not surprisingly, the most popular sporting event among the local population is the annual “Polar Games”, which take place mostly in enclosed spaces and the main event in which are reindeer sled races in the center of the city.
In general, no matter how ironic it may sound, the Toronto team can really be called the first semi-professional football club that perpetuated Vorkuta in its name.