Canadian MLS teams get exemption to host matches

·1-min read

NEW YORK (AP) — The three Canadian teams in Major League Soccer are back in Canada for good, the league announced Thursday.

The Public Health Agency of Canada and Minister of Immigration have approved a National Interest Exemption that allows all MLS players to participate in cross-border matches subject to stringent health and safety protocols.

Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver had played all their home matches in the United States until recently because of pandemic-related border restrictions. Montreal and Toronto returned to their home venues earlier this month. Vancouver, which has played at the home of Real Salt Lake, is scheduled to have its first home match on Aug. 21 against LAFC.

Under the exemption, all players and staff are required to undergo COVID-19 testing before they enter Canada, regardless of vaccination status. Those who are partially vaccinated or unvaccinated will be required to observe a modified quarantine.

The league said 96% of its players, coaches and support staff are fully vaccinated.

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