The 2024 CPL draft of York United FC had two midfielders drafted on December 14. After finishing the CPL season with the fifth-best record and a playoff appearance, they picked fourth and 12th in the 2024 CPL–U Sports Draft. This included picking Christian Zeppieri and Jason Hartill.
2024 CPL Draft York United FC: Two Well-Known Midfielders That Were Drafted
Christian Zeppieri – Midfielder (Picked Fourth Overall from the York University Lions)
From Maple, Ontario, a 6’1” midfielder, Zeppieri, scored five goals for the York University Lions (representing York University) during the season. This included scoring two goals against Algoma on September 16.
YORK LIONS TO OUA MSOC FINAL!
This was the most insane U SPORTS game I’ve called.
York’s Christian Zeppieri scored an ET free kick to go up 1-0, but took his shirt off and got a red card.
Ontario Tech, already with 10 men, tied it up in the ‘118.
York won on PKs. pic.twitter.com/BlxK9b4uWR
— Ben Steiner (@BenSteiner00) November 2, 2023
In 2023, he played in 12 games and started in all of them. He also scored a game-winner against Ontario Tech in the OUA semi-final (source: Canadian Premier League YouTube Account).
“I love his technical quality, his ability to play short and long, he’s got a great passing range. And I love him for that as a little bit of bite gets stuck in. So, I think he’s kind of a bit of a complete package. And I’m excited to see what he brings coming in preseason.”
Zeppieri played at York Lions Stadium, the same stadium where York United FC currently play at. This note is quite important as the club could very easily keep track of the Canadian. He won the Won OUA Silver medal, was named a U SPORTS First-Team All-Canadian, OUA First-Team All-Star and was also named the OUA West MVP in his rookie campaign.
Zeppieri also got some experience playing for Vaughan Azzurri, who had one goal for the team this previous season.
Jason Hartill – Midfielder (Picked 12th Overall from the CBU Capers)
From Carleton, Ontario, a 5’9” midfielder, Hartill is another player to watch for when talking about York United FC. The CBU Capers (representing Cape Breton Univesity) head coach, Deano Morley, described him as “highly skilled, brave and a player who takes responsibility,” (source: York United FC). Also, this is what head coach Nash said about Hartill (source: Canadian Premier League YouTube Account):
“I think he really suits the way we play, which, you know, he’s good in possession. He’s a good passer of the ball. He’s got great match awareness, he can see a pass. And on the defensive side, he’s sharp he gets after the ball and you can press the ball over the wall. So, I think he’s kind of a complete midfielder and someone who’s really interesting to us and we’re looking forward to seeing him in training camp.”
He played an important role with the CBU Capers, starting and playing in 12 games for the team. He also added one assist for the team. Also, Hartill caught the attention of Toronto FC while he played for the Ontario Player Development League (OPDL). This was the beginning of a four-year journey for Hartill with the Toronto FC Academy (source: CBU Capers).
Stats from the CBU Capers stated here.
Competition for both Christian Zeppieri and Jason Hartill
Both Zeppieri and Hartill will compete with are midfielders like Elijah Adekugbe, Carson Emmanuel Buschman-Dormond, Trivine Esprit, Maximilian Ferrari, Jeremy Gagnon-Laparé, Adriano Iannello, Kadin Martin-Pereux, and Matthew Anthony Otucan Baldisimo.
Regarding York United FC’s head coach, Martin Nash’s comments on both players, it feels like Zeppieri is a player that can get some playing time for the club. He also praised Hartill’s awareness and ability to read a pass, which will help York United in terms of generating more offensive possession and better scoring opportunities. It will be very competitive, but it is needed if York United wants to be one of the big teams in the CPL. It also seems that York knows what they are doing with their draft picks.
As for storylines for the draft, Cape Breton University led all universities with three draft picks selected, with one of those three being Hartill.
Exciting News for York United FC
There is optimism with the roster for York United, as Ricardo Pasquel, President and General Manager of York United FC, said this (source: York United FC):
“We probably have the best roster in the league. I don’t want to take a shot at Bobby [Smyrniotis] and Forge and everyone there, but I don’t think it will be as happy for them in the years to come. We’re up for the challenge, I can tell you that.”
READ MORE: The 2023 CPL–U Sports Draft Overview
Forge FC have won three North Star Shields and also one North Star Cup in the CPL. The only other team to win the North Star Shield, was Pacific FC back in 2021.
“Challenges? Of course. It’s going to take a lot of work, a lot of sacrifices but we’ll solve them.”
It was a landmark moment as Game Plan Sports Group were unveiled as the club’s new owners last week.
Here are the big talking points.
— York United FC (@yorkutdfc) December 13, 2023
Game Plan Sports Group (GSPG) was revealed as the next ownership group of York United FC. As the trio brothers of Eduardo, Ricardo and Miguel Pasquel will be taking over the team.
Eduardo said this about the ambitions of the club and getting a new stadium built (source: Charlie O’Connor-Clarke, Digital Content Editor of the Canadian Premier League):
“I think we play at a great stadium right now, we’re very grateful to the university — they’re a first-class university — but I also think we need our own stadium. For the fans, for our identity, for everything. We’re going to work on it, we’ll see some options and what’s the best option. We’re going to talk with the fans and the community, get them involved a lot in the decision, and we’re going to start working on that.”
The Loss of the Toronto Arrows and How That Might Impact York United FC
It is not all good news however for sports fans in the GTA, as one of their co-tenants and only professional rugby union team in Canada, who played at York Lions Stadium, the Toronto Arrows, recently lost their MLR franchise. Still, looking at it from a York United perspective, more dates might be available to schedule games for the CPL club come next year at the venue. The Arrows were also seen as at least as popular if not a more popular team at York Lions Stadium, so maybe some of those fans will come in and support York United next year when the CPL season starts.
Photo Credit: Kristian Jack of the Canadian Premier League on April 22, 2022.
The post 2024 CPL Draft York United FC Overview: Two Midfielders Drafted appeared first on Last Word On Soccer.