The Canadian Premier League announced on Thursday when each CPL city will get its first taste of regular season action, revealing the dates for every club's 2020 home opener. The league's second season will kick off earlier than last year, with two games scheduled for Saturday, April 11. Each team will play 28 matches (14 home and 14 away), and the regular season will conclude on October 3. The full schedule will be released on February 21. With a more balanced schedule thanks to Atlético Ottawa's arrival as the eighth club, the CPL has taken supporter feedback into account by ensuring that 90 per cent of matches in 2020 will be on weekends or holidays. The few weeknight matches scheduled will be focused in the summer months. "Our second season has a lot to look forward to," CPL commissioner David Clanachan said. "Not only are we going to have a more balanced schedule, we are starting to establish a weekend culture for our fans with 21 Friday night matches and we have an eighth team for fans and supporters to come out and see both home and away. We are focused on establishing match-day traditions through our schedule that our supporters will want to adopt for this season and the seasons to come.” Without further ado, here are the home openers for each CPL club (and what to watch for in each). RELATED READING: ROUNDTABLE: Which 2020 home opener is the must-watch match?
Forge FC: April 11, vs. Cavalry FC

Talking points for 2020:
  • This is a rematch of Finals 2019, where Forge topped Cavalry 2-0 on aggregate in a heated championship clash.
  • Forge won three of five league encounters between the two sides in 2019, with Cavalry taking two.
  • Tim Hortons Field also hosted the CPL's inaugural game, a 1-1 draw between Forge and York9 on April 27, 2019.
Pacific FC: April 11, vs. FC Edmonton

Talking points for 2020:
  • Just like in 2019, Westhills Stadiums is one of two CPL venues to host a match on opening weekend (Pacific beat HFX Wanderers 1-0 on April 28, 2019).
  • FC Edmonton won three of five meetings vs. Pacific in 2019, with one draw and one win for the Tridents.
  • The CPL's most exciting U-21 strikers from 2019, Pacific's Terran Campbell and Edmonton's Easton Ongaro, go head to head here.
York9 FC: April 13, vs. HFX Wanderers FC

Talking points for 2020:
  • York9 kicks off at York Lions Stadium on Easter Monday to round out a packed first weekend of 2020.
  • These teams drew twice in 2019, with HFX winning two and York9 earning a massive 6-2 home result.
  • HFX's only road win of 2019 came in both sides' last game of the year, a 2-0 victory on October 19.
FC Edmonton: April 18, vs. Cavalry FC

Talking points for 2020:
  • The 2020 edition of Al Classico gets going early, with both sides beginning their regular season against each other.
  • Cavalry took four of five games last year, with the Eddies snagging one point in a 0-0 draw on August 16.
  • The Cavs won their first seven CPL matches in 2019; can their Alberta brethren hand them an early loss this time?
HFX Wanderers FC: April 25, vs. Atlético Ottawa

Talking points for 2020:
  • Wanderers Grounds won't need to wait long to meet the CPL's newest club, as Atlético Ottawa visits after HFX kicks off at York9 two weeks earlier.
  • No head-to-head record in the CPL here, although HFX exited the 2019 Canadian Championship at the hands of the Ottawa Fury.
  • The Wanderers lost just twice at home in 2019, with five wins and seven draws for one of the CPL's best home records.
Cavalry FC: April 25, vs. York9 FC

Talking points for 2020:
  • The Cavs return to ATCO Field in late April, after going 11-1-2 in league play last year (although they lost there in the season's last game, Leg 2 of Finals 2019).
  • Cavalry's 2019 home opener was also against York9: a 2-1 win over the Nine Stripes at Spruce Meadows.
  • York9 never beat the Cavs in 2019, losing four and drawing the last game, a dramatic 1-1 result at York Lions Stadium (where York equalized late against a nine-man Cavalry side)
Valour FC: May 2, vs. Atlético Ottawa

Talking points for 2020:
  • Just like fans in Halifax, Winnipeggers at IG Field will meet their newest foes right off the bat in their home opener.
  • Valour's 2019 home opener was a 2-1 loss to FC Edmonton on May 4, in front of 9,699 fans.
  • With a slew of exciting new faces in Valour's squad this season, this will be fans' first opportunity to see Rob Gale's new-look lineup.
Atlético Ottawa: May 16, vs. HFX Wanderers FC

Talking points for 2020:
  • The first CPL game at TD Place Stadium will feature a club that's familiar with the venue, with the Wanderers having played there in the 2019 Canadian Championship.
  • With a couple away games already under their belts, Atlético Ottawa could be in good position to open their inaugural season with a win.
  • The Wanderers will play two early games against their closest geographical foes; could early familiarity breed a fledgling rivalry?

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