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thePodcast: How Canada’s first FIFA World Cup team got a fair deal

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For the week of Nov. 27, 2022:

Canada’s team at the FIFA men’s World Cup didn’t play like 41st-ranked country when it held second-ranked Belgium to a slim 1-0 win on Nov. 23 at Qatar 2022. 

Canada returned to soccer’s biggest stage after a more than 36-year absence. After the team qualified in March, players went on strike briefly over the Canadian Soccer Association’s reluctance to share the $10 million minimum prize for appearing in this fall’s tournament. President Nick Bontis said Nov. 9 that a deal with the men’s and women’s teams is nearing. 

North Vancouver lawyer Ron Perrick negotiated the deal for Canada’s first World Cup team to be paid fairly for its appearance at Mexico 1986. The players were amply compensated, but Perrick had to keep going back to the CSA before successive qualifying tournaments to cut new deals. 

“The [2022] controversy was a result of the CSA not getting their ducks in a row and getting some aggressive marketing out there for the players,” said veteran player agent Perrick, Bob Mackin’s guest on this week’s thePodcast. “I mean, the only player that we were hearing about was [Alphonso] Davies. We didn’t hear a lot about all the other players. There was no profile.”

Plus Pacific Rim and Pacific Northwest headlines and a commentary.

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