Toronto, ON – (August 16, 2023) League1 Ontario welcomes start-up soccer team Sudbury Cyclones as the first member of the inaugural Men’s League2 season, the new third tier that will begin in 2024.
Sudbury Cyclones – a name revived from former soccer team Sudbury Cyclones who played in the National Soccer League in the 1970s – will play their home games at James Jerome Sports Complex and play for promotion to the L1O Men’s Championship as the league introduces promotion and relegation for the first time.
The ambition from the club’s ownership group, SW Sports and Entertainment (SWSE), is to give Sudbury an elite soccer team to cheer for, while creating a fun, exciting matchday experience that will be talked about around town.
SWSE, led by owner Dario Zulich and Chief Operating Officer Bob Johnston, are not new to the sports world. Sudbury Wolves Hockey Club, Sudbury Five Basketball Club, and Sudbury Spartans Football Club are all already part of the organization’s family and play important roles in the community.
In addition to welcoming players from across the province, there’s a focus on local player recruitment and building a youth academy that includes U14, U16, and U18 teams for boys and girls, as well as a men’s U19 team directly leading to the first team. The aim of Cyclones’ girls program will be to eventually support the club to field a women’s team in L1O.
The club’s official logo is set to be announced in the fall, in addition to more expansion teams and L1O reserve teams that will make up the League2 division.
Connor Vande Weghe, Sporting Director of Sudbury Cyclones, said “We are ecstatic to bring the Sudbury Cyclones back to life and to represent Northern Ontario.
“The challenge of competing near the top level in the province is an exciting one for us. We look forward to integrating our great city and soccer community into the existing soccer structure with League1 Canada.
“Top-flight soccer is back in our city, and we could not be more excited to bring the brand and team to life over the coming months.”
Matthew Braithwaite, Managing Director of League1 Ontario, said: “We are very excited to welcome Sudbury Cyclones to the men’s, and eventually women’s, League1 Ontario soccer pyramid.
“The ownership group showed great passion and ambition to raise the level of soccer in the city, and will bring a professional feel to League2 given their proven track record of running several successful sports teams in the community.
“We are looking forward to the Cyclones taking to the field in 2024 and working with them further to grow the game in Ontario, creating more opportunities for players, coaches, and fans.”