Mr. Speaker, Wednesday evening will mark a red-letter day in Canadian soccer history.
The Montreal Impact, led by Didier Drogba, Ignacio Piatti, and Laurent Ciman, will take on Toronto FC in the MLS championship semifinal.
If anyone had told me 40 years ago, as an Italian Canadian kid playing local soccer, that 60,000 people would have attended the first match in Olympic Stadium, I would have said, “Impossible”. Yet that is precisely what happened last week when the Impact won 3-2. More than 30,000 people are expected for the match at BMO Field in Toronto tomorrow evening.
Soccer is the sport of the future for Canada. It is a unifying force in Canada's diverse cultural landscape, and the Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver clubs are on a mission to train the next generation of players.
I congratulate Toronto FC, the Montreal Impact, and the Saputo family. Go Impact.