Bernier was both a Canadian champion and a hero on the men’s national team, while Franko and Wilkinson played with the women’s national team at the Olympics and the FIFA Women’s World Cup. These three Canadian heroes deserve this great honor in recognition of their careers as professional players.said Dr. Nick Bontis, president of the national federation.
Former player, captain and coach of the Impact, then CF Montreal, Patrice Bernier also represented Canada in three rounds of qualifying for the World Cup.
The midfielder played in four editions of the CONCACAF Gold Cup, including a presence in the semi-finals in 2007.
He has 56 starts and has been maple leaf captain three times.
I didn’t play football to become immortal, I played because it was my passionhe named.
The greatest prestige you can have is representing your country. This is where you realize you are part of the elite. Unfortunately I did not participate in the World Cup. But after wearing the jersey 56 times, there’s no special moment more than that.
† For the little ones: perseverance! Live your passion, whatever your goal. I was told I was crazy to drop hockey for football. And today I’m here, with those who marked Canadian football. †
Among the pros, Bernier played in Canada, Norway, Germany and Denmark. He played in the UEFA Cup tournament, among other things. He was the first Canadian to play more than 10,000 minutes in MLS with a Canadian team. He was named Quebec Professional Soccer Player of the Year eight times and was inducted into the Quebec Soccer Hall of Fame in 2017.
Martina Franko has competed in the World Cup and Olympic Games and helped Canada reach the quarterfinals at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. She won two CONCACAF silver medals and a bronze medal at the Pan American Games in Rio in 2007.
She was capped 55 times in the national team as a striker and central defender.
It’s hard for me to pick one highlight for my career. Most of all, I remember the joy of standing next to notable players in the national team. We have formed a family. We became sisters and then best friendsFranko supported by video conference.
† On the pitch, I have not only competed in the Olympics, but also played some of my most memorable matches in qualifying for these Games. Got to play in Mexico in front of more than 20,000 spectators and feel the sweat on my hands. It was a fantastic experience. †
I would like to be remembered as a pioneer in the Canadian women’s team. Our national program needs good funding and luckily things are changing fast.
Rhian Wilkinson won a CONCACAF Championship and two Olympic bronze medals.
She also represented Canada at four World Championships and three Olympic Games. She also received six medals at CONCACAF tournaments and three at the Pan American Games.
It’s hard to have words for a moment like this. It has been a year that started very difficult for me. I lost my father in January. Having something like that is special to me, but also to my family and my friends who have given so much for me to be here today. I still work in the football world and I know it’s thanks to them and the work Canada Soccer has done for me.said the first who leads the Portland team in the NWSL.
As for the direct effects winning the Olympic gold medal in Tokyo could have, Wilkinson hopes it signals the development of even greater things for women’s soccer in Canada.
It was an incredible moment! To see what kind of leadership there is among our young players, to see how they follow the lead of Bev (Priestman) and his assistants. It is an honor to have played a small part in the history of our national team to achieve this golden momentunderlined the one who led the fate of Great Britain’s team at those same Games.
I think it’s part of my job to make sure women’s football is never forgotten. The reality is that in Europe and closer to here in the United States, Mexico and South America, there are women’s professional leagues. The level of the game progresses very fastshe insisted, activating the alarm bell.
† We need to know that we can’t take a break. This is a time when we should use this gold medal to pursue the creation of a women’s league here in Canada. We haven’t had enough athletes who can continue playing after the 2021 Games. At this point, we are leaving all responsibility for our development to the United States. †
She appeared in 181 national team matches from 2003 to 2017. She was ranked third in that regard when she announced her retirement from international football.
With the day’s three nominations, the Hall of Fame strikes the balance with 29 former members of the men’s national team and the same number on the women’s roster.