It’s not easy to be work in Canadian soccer these days. Even the volunteers want out.
Dino Rossi posted a lengthy tweet on Friday explaining he had resigned from Canada Soccer’s board of directors, saying “football doesn’t come first at Canada Soccer these days.”
The longtime administrator was elected to the Canada Soccer board as the Ontario representative last May. In his 10-month involvement, Rossi stated he quite simply found it difficult to contribute in a meaningful manner.
“If you know anything about me, you know how passionate I am about Canadian soccer and especially our national teams,” Rossi wrote. “The opportunity to serve the CSA [Canadian Soccer Association] and the sport as a director, especially with the 2026 World Cup coming to Canada, felt like such an exciting opportunity at a pivotal time.
“Sadly, and for a multitude of reasons, it became apparent that football doesn’t come first at Canada Soccer these days. I found it exceedingly difficult to contribute in a manner that I found meaningful, impactful, and in service of the sport and those who play the game.
“Ultimately when a situation isn’t a good fit, it is better to move on.”
Canada Soccer’s chief communications and content officer Paulo Senra confirmed to Neil Davidson of the Canadian Press that Rossi had informed the CSA earlier this week of his decision.
“We thank him for his service and we wish him all the best,” Senra said in a short statement.
Rossi also volunteers as the executive chairman of League1 Ontario, owned by Canadian Soccer Business (CSB) which brought scrutiny around Rossi’s appointment to the board. During a House of Commons Heritage Committee meeting in May, Liberal MP Anthony Housefather raised concerns about Rossi’s potential conflicts of interest and called on Canada Soccer president Charmaine Crooks to have Rossi away from any matters involving CSB.
The sentence “football doesn’t come first at Canada Soccer these days” is a pretty powerful one to read and doesn’t inspire confidence that the federation is moving in the right direction after so much recent turmoil, including both national teams’ players publicly speaking out against the CSA in 2022 and 2023 and a series of Heritage Committee sessions examining Canada Soccer’s mechanics.
And this situation is just one of several changes at Canada Soccer to start the new year. Alyson Walker, who was newly appointed as the general secretary, unexpectedly withdrew from the position on what was supposed to be her first day on the job. Walker cited personal reasons for her decision and it has left Canada Soccer to search for a suitable replacement, in addition to naming a full-time men’s national team head coach after John Herdman traded CanMNT red for Toronto FC red last summer.
Former Canada captain Jason deVos recently resigned from his position as interim general secretary, deciding to join Toronto FC as an assistant coach, as he did under Herdman in the lead-up to and at the World Cup in Qatar.
Meanwhile, a court battle continues between Canada Soccer’s media partner Canadian Soccer Business and broadcaster Mediapro, although CONCACAF President and FIFA VP Victor Montagliani has teased that a resolution may be forthcoming.