Friday, May 18

Canadian content requirements a bad idea

Vancouver Whitecaps captain Jay DeMerit fired off a tweet yesterday that piqued my interest: is the criticism leveled at his team for their lack of Canadians justified?

The Vancouver Whitecaps have just four Canadians on their 30-man roster. But three (Bryce Alderson, Caleb Clarke and Russel Teibert) have yet to see any playing time in regular season matches this year. The fourth, defensive stalwart Alain Rochat, is only nominally a Canadian, having moved to Switzerland when he was two — he plays his international soccer for Switzerland.

The Whitecaps' lack of Canadians has been the focus of some attention recently. They are currently in the finals of the Canadian championship against Toronto FC, who in contrast to the Whitecaps have nine Canadians on their roster. Five of them played in the first leg of the finals against Vancouver. Plus, the Canadian Soccer Association has a new president, Victor Montagliani, who has called for more stringent quotas on the number of Canadian players teams this side of the 49th parallel must carry.