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Guest Jeffery S.

Voyageurs Protest Letter: reactions and references

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Guest Jeffery S.

(This thread is only for documentation of who might have received The Voyageurs Official Protest in the press or amongst powers that be, and where and by whom has been referred to, read, spoken of, or elsewhere posted).

The Voyageurs Protest the Hiring Procedure for the Canadian National Soccer Coach

The Canadian Soccer Association (CSA) has been without a head coach for the Men's National Soccer Team since the resignation of Frank Yallop in June 2006. For a similar amount of time the CSA has also been without a Technical Director. In order to fill these positions, the CSA established a search committee, consisting of the CSA executive committee, and consulted with members of the Canadian National Soccer Team. The candidate selected by the committee as the top choice to fill both positions was Brazilian Rene Simoes, who led Jamaica to the World Cup in 1998. After months of delays in making a decision, the Board of Directors recently decided not to approve the hiring of Mr. Simoes despite the recommendation of the search committee.

The Best Candidate

While we understand that it is not our place to determine who is the best candidate for the head coach position, we find it unusual that the search committee's recommendation was rejected. Furthermore, the Voyageurs find it unacceptable that after a lengthy 11 month search process, the Men's National Soccer Team is still without a head coach. The team is currently at a point where preparedness is of the utmost importance with both the Gold Cup (North America's soccer championship, in June 2007) and the qualification stage of the World Cup rapidly approaching. We will now be competing in North America's most important soccer tournament under an interim coach and the eventual head coach will not be able to use this tournament to prepare for the even more important qualification stage for the next World Cup (South Africa 2010). The selection process for the head coach position has taken far too long and has not proceeded in a professional manner befitting of a national governing body of a major sport.

In 1986, Canada made its only appearance in the World Cup. Since then we have failed to qualify for 5 consecutive World Cups. Qualification for the World Cup provides exposure for our program which could only result in increased funding for the CSA itself and Canadian soccer nationwide. It only makes sense to give the program priority when qualification happens every four years.

National and Provincial Accountability

The poor performance of the CSA and its affiliated provincial associations over the last 20 years is due in large part to its directors not being held accountable for their unsuccessful policies. Despite soccer's popularity across the country, the low professional profile of the sport has allowed the CSA and the provincial associations to be operated free from proper scrutiny. Technically, members of the board of directors are responsible to the clubs and amateur soccer players in their provinces yet very few of these players and organizations are aware of the role that their provincial representatives have in the running of our national teams. The fact that many Canadians are unaware that Canada even has a Men's National Soccer Team is a sign of the failure of the CSA to promote the team properly. The Men's National Team rarely plays at home. Yet it is this anonymity that allows the same group of directors to function in secret and not be held accountable for their failed policies.

The Voyageurs Call for Change

As long time fans of the Canadian national teams and promoters of soccer in Canada, the Voyageurs want to change how the governing body of our sport is operated. We have suffered through two decades of incompetence at the CSA and it is time for a positive change in an organization we have lost all confidence in. The CSA’s operating budget consists of a significant amount of tax money, as well as a portion of the fees that every registered soccer player pays, and it is time to analyze how this money is spent. Transparency and availability of audited financial reports is necessary. It is time to scrutinize how the various members of the board, including the respective presidents of the provincial associations, have acquired their positions, what their qualifications are and above all to hold them individually responsible for the decisions they are making.

Canadian soccer is thriving despite the poor treatment of the Men's National Team by the CSA and the provincial associations. Canada now has professional soccer players playing in most of the major soccer leagues in Europe including the English Premiership, the German Bundesliga and Spain’s La Liga. We have the talent to qualify for the next World Cup if the team has a top-notch coach and is given the proper preparation. Our players travel from all over the globe to play for their country and it is about time that we give them the support they deserve.

The Voyageurs demand that the Board of Directors either honours the recommendation of the hiring committee, or that they issue a press release that explains why the recommendation was rejected and provides information about how they intend to fill the still vacant position.

The Voyageurs demand that the Canadian Soccer Association and its individual members operate in a more professional manner and be held accountable for their actions. We will do everything in our power to ensure that this is the case in the future.

The Voyageurs, Canada Soccer Supporters

The Voyageurs are a national group of Canadian soccer fans. Our mandate is to promote Canadian soccer in our country and be a visible presence at every national team game, both at home and abroad. Our numbers have risen consistently since our formation in 1996 and consist of membership from Victoria to St. John's and all around the world. We travel great distances to watch our national teams play and to support those players who are proud to wear the red and white.

Since 2001 The Voyageurs have also been the proud sponsors of the Voyageur’s Cups, awarded to the best men’s and women’s soccer clubs in Canada in head-to-head competition.

May 2007

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Guest Jeffery S.

Press Reactions

-Portions of an earlier version were read on the the Soccer Show with Nigel Reed and Bob Iarusci

On Fan 590, see audio for show of May 3, 2007

http://www.fan590.com/features/soccer.jsp

-Posted on the BC Soccer Web

http://www.bcsoccerweb.com/articles-may/bcsw-may-04.htm

-Posted on the Ontario Soccer Web

http://www.ontariosoccerweb.com/articles.php?id=3992

-Posted in the Canada section of Big Soccer

http://www.bigsoccer.com/forum/showthread.php?t=532958

-Sent to the SIRC press release service, which I understand has sent it out to a large number of sporting organizations across the country. (Interestingly enough, SIRC added the CSA as the source for the release at the start, perhaps thinking, on the basis of our website name at the end, that we were the CSA)

http://www.sirc.ca/news_view.cfm?id=15521

-Peter Mallett's article in the Globe and Mail does not directly refer to the Voyageur's protest, but does deal with the causes of our discontent and cites "insiders" and other sources that corroborate our position.

http://www.globesports.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20070507.wsptsoccan7/GSStory/GlobeSportsSoccer/home

-Nuke Soccer put the story up on the afternoon of Sunday May 6.

http://soccer.loop48.com/modules.php?name=News&file=categories&op=newindex&catid=4

-Pat Hickey of the Montreal Gazette centres his column on the letter and its issues, as he had mentioned he would, on May 9.

http://www.canada.com/montrealgazette/columnists/story.html?id=d88597b4-60ff-41ee-948c-79f85789a189

-Reported to have been mentioned on CBC French channel on the 9th, not sure where, when, by who, or what they said. Anyone?

-Stephen Brunt deals with the coach crisis at the CSA in his Globe and Mail column, also Wed May 9th.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20070509.BRUNT09/EmailTPStory/

-Cathal Kelly links to our site and the letter specifically in his Toronto Star column May 10, "Brazil coach slips through the cracks"

http://www.thestar.com/columnists/article/212283

-Ben Knight writes "Enough is enough", an outstanding article about the Voyageurs, fan pressure, and being let down by an "organization that starts with a C, ends with an A, and has a sport in the middle". From May 11, Sportsnet:

http://www.sportsnet.ca/soccer/columnist.jsp?content=20070511_145011_5408

-Ian Kennett from this board details his conversation on the protest letter with Bob Mackin of the Vancouver Sun, in representation of the Voyageur's:

http://www.canadian-soccer.com/forum/topic.asp?whichpage=1&TOPIC_ID=12052#144744

The final Mackin article through Sun Media ends up being quite short, though Ian's quote is well chosen and addresses a key issue fairly:

http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Soccer/Canada/2007/05/17/4187576-sun.html

-On May 17 Teddy Katz from CBC RAdio World Report has spoken to Voyageurs about the Mitchell signing, look for a possible clip Friday morning (the 18th) on the radio show (runs hourly I think, 6, 7 and 8).

-May 17, Mike Mosher, Head Coach Men's Soccer, University of British Columbia, writes a letter in response an article by Cathal Kelly criticizing the signing of Dale Mitchell

("Mitchell Wrong Choice for National Coach", at http://www.thestar.com/columnists/article/214916

The piece is critical of the CSA but particularly aggressive towards the reporter for questioning the hiring of Mitchell:

http://www.bcsoccerweb.com/articles-may/bcsw-may-17.htm

Mosher retires the piece from the BC Soccer Web on May 18, regretting some of the personal attacks and suggesting he should have sat on it longer and toned it down before sending it out. As he asked for the retraction -send in response to my personal letter to him- to be posted in the Voyageurs forum, we have done so in the appropriate thread:

http://www.canadian-soccer.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=12073&whichpage=2

-May 18, Bill Ault in Canada Kicks disagrees with Kelly as well, though with better form. He says Mitchell is the right man, and that "The CSA despite themselves and certainly not through planning or forethought have got this one right."

http://www.canadakicks.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=771&Itemid=9

-Not a protest letter reaction, but a John F. Molinaro column on CBC Online, May 18, criticizing the CSA for a few apparent contradictions in the hiring process, and for "cutting the legs out from" Mitchell in the process:

http://www.cbc.ca/sports/columns/molinaro/index.html

-Ben Knight on Sportsnet, May 23, separates the CSA's problems from judgements about Mitchell:

http://www.sportsnet.ca/soccer/columnist.jsp?content=20070523_155734_5856

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Guest Jeffery S.

Press Reactions

-Portions of an earlier version were read on the the Soccer Show with Nigel Reed and Bob Iarusci

On Fan 590, see audio for show of May 3, 2007

http://www.fan590.com/features/soccer.jsp

-Posted on the BC Soccer Web

http://www.bcsoccerweb.com/articles-may/bcsw-may-04.htm

-Posted on the Ontario Soccer Web

http://www.ontariosoccerweb.com/articles.php?id=3992

-Posted in the Canada section of Big Soccer

http://www.bigsoccer.com/forum/showthread.php?t=532958

-Sent to the SIRC press release service, which I understand has sent it out to a large number of sporting organizations across the country. (Interestingly enough, SIRC added the CSA as the source for the release at the start, perhaps thinking, on the basis of our website name at the end, that we were the CSA)

http://www.sirc.ca/news_view.cfm?id=15521

-Peter Mallett's article in the Globe and Mail does not directly refer to the Voyageur's protest, but does deal with the causes of our discontent and cites "insiders" and other sources that corroborate our position.

http://www.globesports.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20070507.wsptsoccan7/GSStory/GlobeSportsSoccer/home

-Nuke Soccer put the story up on the afternoon of Sunday May 6.

http://soccer.loop48.com/modules.php?name=News&file=categories&op=newindex&catid=4

-Pat Hickey of the Montreal Gazette centres his column on the letter and its issues, as he had mentioned he would, on May 9.

http://www.canada.com/montrealgazette/columnists/story.html?id=d88597b4-60ff-41ee-948c-79f85789a189

-Reported to have been mentioned on CBC French channel on the 9th, not sure where, when, by who, or what they said. Anyone?

-Stephen Brunt deals with the coach crisis at the CSA in his Globe and Mail column, also Wed May 9th.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20070509.BRUNT09/EmailTPStory/

-Cathal Kelly links to our site and the letter specifically in his Toronto Star column May 10, "Brazil coach slips through the cracks"

http://www.thestar.com/columnists/article/212283

-Ben Knight writes "Enough is enough", an outstanding article about the Voyageurs, fan pressure, and being let down by an "organization that starts with a C, ends with an A, and has a sport in the middle". From May 11, Sportsnet:

http://www.sportsnet.ca/soccer/columnist.jsp?content=20070511_145011_5408

-Ian Kennett from this board details his conversation on the protest letter with Bob Mackin of the Vancouver Sun, in representation of the Voyageur's:

http://www.canadian-soccer.com/forum/topic.asp?whichpage=1&TOPIC_ID=12052#144744

The final Mackin article through Sun Media ends up being quite short, though Ian's quote is well chosen and addresses a key issue fairly:

http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Soccer/Canada/2007/05/17/4187576-sun.html

-On May 17 Teddy Katz from CBC RAdio World Report has spoken to Voyageurs about the Mitchell signing, look for a possible clip Friday morning (the 18th) on the radio show (runs hourly I think, 6, 7 and 8).

-May 17, Mike Mosher, Head Coach Men's Soccer, University of British Columbia, writes a letter in response an article by Cathal Kelly criticizing the signing of Dale Mitchell

("Mitchell Wrong Choice for National Coach", at http://www.thestar.com/columnists/article/214916

The piece is critical of the CSA but particularly aggressive towards the reporter for questioning the hiring of Mitchell:

http://www.bcsoccerweb.com/articles-may/bcsw-may-17.htm

Mosher retires the piece from the BC Soccer Web on May 18, regretting some of the personal attacks and suggesting he should have sat on it longer and toned it down before sending it out. As he asked for the retraction -send in response to my personal letter to him- to be posted in the Voyageurs forum, we have done so in the appropriate thread:

http://www.canadian-soccer.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=12073&whichpage=2

-May 18, Bill Ault in Canada Kicks disagrees with Kelly as well, though with better form. He says Mitchell is the right man, and that "The CSA despite themselves and certainly not through planning or forethought have got this one right."

http://www.canadakicks.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=771&Itemid=9

-Not a protest letter reaction, but a John F. Molinaro column on CBC Online, May 18, criticizing the CSA for a few apparent contradictions in the hiring process, and for "cutting the legs out from" Mitchell in the process:

http://www.cbc.ca/sports/columns/molinaro/index.html

-Ben Knight on Sportsnet, May 23, separates the CSA's problems from judgements about Mitchell:

http://www.sportsnet.ca/soccer/columnist.jsp?content=20070523_155734_5856

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Now you are getting organized, working as a team, pulling together, one common goal, about time Voyageurs.

Here is to the future, and as we all know, the future comes one day at a time.

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The protest letter was touched upon briefly on Sportsworld. However, Davidson didn't really comment on the letter.

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James Sharman managed to mention the voyageurs and then managed to get the website address wrong by quoting canada-soccer.com. I entered that into the computer and it did not even say did you mean and did not put the correct name up.

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Guest Jeffery S.
quote:Originally posted by Jamit

Nuke Soccer has posted the letter...

Thanks. But I can't figure out how to get to that from the front page. Is there an Opinions link?

Regarding Davidson. I am not surprised, he gets CSA interviews and travels with the team to major tournaments, so if he comes out at all critical of the CSA he will lose his insider stories. Sorry to say.

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quote:Originally posted by Jeffrey S.

Thanks. But I can't figure out how to get to that from the front page. Is there an Opinions link?

Well the letter that is on the front page way down at the bottom contains a link to the "Opinions" section at the top of the letter. It is just the word Opinions</u> with an underline. Two links at the top.

Strange that they don't have the letter by itself, or any of their other news storys for that matter.

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quote:Originally posted by Jamit

Well the letter that is on the front page way down at the bottom contains a link to the "Opinions" section at the top of the letter. It is just the word Opinions</u> with an underline. Two links at the top.

Strange that they don't have the letter by itself, or any of their other news storys for that matter.

try:

1. http://soccer.loop48.com/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=3253

2. the May 2007 stories archive

thanx ...

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quote:Originally posted by Jamit

Well the letter that is on the front page way down at the bottom contains a link to the "Opinions" section at the top of the letter. It is just the word Opinions</u> with an underline. Two links at the top.

Strange that they don't have the letter by itself, or any of their other news storys for that matter.

try:

1. http://soccer.loop48.com/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=3253

2. the May 2007 stories archive

thanx ...

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quote:Originally posted by RealGooner

Toronto Star today, article by Cathal Kelly. Direct link in article to the letter on this website!

That is very cool.

Jeffrey, can I suggest that you edit your second post to include all the links we have provided?

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Great article by the Toronto Star except calling us a 'small group'. For heaven's sake, we have 1500 active registered members. Enough to fill a stadium on our own, scarfs and everything.

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quote:Originally posted by The Ref

Great article by the Toronto Star except calling us a 'small group'. For heaven's sake, we have 1500 active registered members. Enough to fill a stadium on our own, scarfs and everything.

Certainly not the NSS in Toronto, your about 18,500 short for that SSS[:o)]

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quote:Originally posted by RealGooner

Certainly not the NSS in Toronto, your about 18,500 short for that SSS[:o)]

The 1500 number was also quite amusing. I counted more like 100 a while back and we haven't grown in at all for several years. if anything, we have shrunk a ton. Eliminate all those who are not really supporters anyway, the trolls, etc and you might be down 40-60. In shear numbers, the V's are a drop in the bucket compared to what the local supporters for TFC have grown to.

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We have indeed shrunk in numbers, particularly with a lot of GTA posters having left over the last year. Also agreed that we don't really have 1500 regular posters. I think the comment by Cathal Kelly was quite accurate.

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quote:Originally posted by Gian-Luca

We have indeed shrunk in numbers, particularly with a lot of GTA posters having left over the last year.

The really good thing about what Ryan, Sean and Rudi are doing with U-Sector though is that most of the guys that are going to TFC games will also start going to Canada games in Toronto (and area) if they hadn't before. Whether we fall under one moniker or two (Voyageurs/U-Sector) is a non-issue.

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The Voyageurs have never become much of a cohesive force. Part of that is distance, part of that is the lack of games in Canada, part of that is the lack of will. All of which has conspired to keep us from gaining focus. That and incessent childish bickering.

40-50 sounds about right at any given time and I don't think the losses from GTA have been any more pronounced than the losses from the Rest of Canada. I'd also disagree that we (The Voyageurs) were "influential" as Cathal Kelly suggests.

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