Toronto Blizzard (NASL)

Toronto Blizzard (NASL)

: "This article is about the original Toronto Blizzard of the NASL. For the second team to use the name, see Toronto Blizzard (1986-1993)"

Football club infobox | clubname = Toronto Blizzard

fullname = Toronto Blizzard
nickname = Blizzard, Metros, Metros-Croatia
founded = 1971
dissolved = 1984
ground = Varsity Stadium
capacity = 22,000
chairman =
manager =
league = North American Soccer League
season =
position =

Toronto Blizzard was a professional soccer club based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada that played in the North American Soccer League.

North American Soccer League

The Toronto Metros were a soccer team based out of Toronto that played in the NASL. They played from 1971 to 1974. Their home field was Varsity Stadium. The Metros merged with National Soccer League side Toronto Croatia in 1975 to form NASL club Toronto Metros-Croatia.

The Toronto Metros-Croatia were formed in 1975 when the Toronto Metros of the North American Soccer League were merged with Toronto Croatia of the National Soccer League. The team competed in the NASL between 1975 and 1978 and was able to become champion of the NASL by winning the 1976 Soccer Bowl. Following the 1978 season, the team split.

The Toronto Blizzard came into existence when the Global Television Network purchased the struggling Toronto Metros-Croatia on February 1, 1979. [Wangerin p.192] Following the purchase, Toronto Croatia returned to the National Soccer League. Croatia had left the NSL to merge with NASL side Toronto Metros in 1975 to form Metros-Croatia. The Metros had won the NASL Soccer Bowl trophy in 1976 with the aid of Portugese soccer legend Eusebio. The Blizzard were members of the North American Soccer League from 1979 to 1984, the last year of league operations. The team were runners-up for the league championship in 1983, losing the Soccer Bowl to the Tulsa Roughnecks 2-0 in front of nearly sixty thousand people at Vancouver's BC Place Stadium. They were runners-up again in 1984 when they lost to the Chicago Sting two games to none in a best of three championship series. The club was coached in these final two years by flagicon|ENGBobby Houghton, assisted by Dave Turner and featured flagicon|ITARoberto Bettega, flagicon|ZAF|1928David Byrne, flagicon|ENGCliff Calvert, flagicon|CANPasquale De Luca, flagicon|CANCharlie Falzon, flagicon|CANSven Habermann, flagicon|EnglandPaul Hammond, flagicon|CANPaul James, flagicon|SWEConny Karlsson, flagicon|CANVictor Kodelja, flagicon|CANTrevor McCallum, flagicon|CANColin Miller, flagicon|SWEJan Möller,flagicon|Northern IrelandJimmy Nicholl, flagicon|ZAF|1928Ace Ntsoelengoe, flagicon|CANRandy Ragan, flagicon|ZAF|1928Neill Roberts, flagicon|ZAF|1928John Paskin, flagicon|SCODerek Spalding, and flagicon|CANBruce Wilson in its lineup.

The Blizzard qualified for the play-offs on only two other occasions, in 1979 and 1982, losing in the first round each time. Players during the first four years included flagicon|BermudaClyde Best, flagicon|SCOJimmy Bone, flagicon|SCODrew Busby, flagicon|ENGCliff Calvert, flagicon|CANTony Chursky, flagicon|SCODuncan Davidson, flagicon|ENGColin Franks, George Gibbs, flagicon|England Jimmy Greenhoff, flagicon|CANGraham Hately, flagicon|IRLDave Henderson, flagicon|CANSam Lenarduzzi, flagicon|YUGIvan Lukacevi, flagicon|CANDavid McQueen, flagicon|TurkeyGüngör Tekin, flagicon|SCOWillie McVie, flagicon|SCOBobby Prentice, flagicon|SCO Malcolm Robertson, flagicon|ZAF|1928Jomo Sono, flagicon|CANGordon Sweetzer, flagicon|YUGBlagoje Tamindzi, Jose Valasquez,flagicon|Scotland Peter Lorimer,flagicon|England David Fairclough, flagicon|CANBrian Budd and flagicon|CANGordon Wallace.

Resurrecting the Blizzard

The team were suceeded by the Toronto Blizzard who played in the Canadian Soccer League between 1986 and 1993, before folding.

When Toronto was awarded a Major League Soccer franchise in 2005, some thought that the team might be named the Blizzard. However, the team ended up choosing to be called Toronto FC.

Year-by-year team record

Metros year-by-year


* North American Soccer League: 1976


;flagicon|Argentina Argentina
*Juan Carlos Molina 1982

;flagicon|Bermuda Bermuda
*Clyde Best 1981, 1982

;flagicon|CAN Canada
*Nick Albanis 1980
*Aldo D'Alfonso 1979
*Brian Budd 1979
*Tony Chursky 1980, 1981, 1982
*Pasquale de Luca 1982, 1983, 1984
*Charlie Falzon 1983, 1984
*Tibor Gemeri 1981
*Sven Habermann 1983, 1984
*Graham Hately 1980, 1981
*Paul James 1983, 1984
*Victor Kodelja 1982, 1983
*Sam Lenarduzzi 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982
*Trevor McCallum 1983, 1984
*Mike McLenaghen 1980
*Dave McQueen 1981, 1982
*Colin Miller 1982, 1983, 1984
*Randy Ragan 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984
*Peter Roe 1979, 1980
*Gordon Sweetzer 1980, 1981
*Gordon Wallace 1980, 1981
*Bruce Wilson 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984

;flagicon|ENG England
*Cliff Calvert 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984
*Alex Cropley 1981
*David Fairclough 1982
*Colin Franks 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982 []
*Jimmy Greenhoff 1981
*Paul Hammond 1984
*Jimmy Kelly 1981
*Alec Lindsay 1979
*Alan Merrick 1982
*Dave Needham 1982 []
*Phil Parkes 1983

;flagicon|IRE Republic of Ireland
*Dave Henderson 1979

;flagicon|ITA Italy
*Alessandro Abbondanza 1979
*Roberto Bettega 1983, 1984
*Gianpaolo Boniperti 1981
*Francesco Morini 1980

;flagicon|Nigeria Nigeria
*Damian Ogunsuyi 1979

;flagicon|Northern Ireland Northern Ireland
*Jimmy Nicholl 1982, 1983, 1984

;flagicon|Peru Peru
*Jose Velasquez 1980, 1981

;flagicon|Rhodesia Rhodesia
*Robert Godoka 1979

;flagicon|SCO Scotland
*Jimmy Bone 1979, 1980
*Drew Busby 1979, 1980
*Alex Cropley 1981 []
*Duncan Davidson 1981, 1982 []
*Peter Lorimer 1979, 1980
*Willie McVie 1979, 1980
*Bobby Prentice 1979, 1980
*Malcolm Robertson 1981
*Derek Spalding 1983, 1984

;flagicon|ZAF|1928 South Africa
*David Byrne 1982, 1983, 1984
*Ace Ntsoelengoe 1982, 1983, 1984
*John Paskin 1984
*Neill Roberts 1982, 1983
*Jomo Sono 1980, 1981, 1982
*Julius Sono 1981
*Geoff Wegerle 1983

;flagicon|Sweden Sweden
*Tore Cervin 1981
*Conny Karlsson 1983, 1984
*Jan Moller 1982, 1983

;flagicon|Turkey Turkey
*Gungor Tekin 1981

;flagicon|USA United States
*Dan Counce 1979
*Paul Hammond 1984
*Jim McAlister 1980
*Alan Merrick 1982
*Derek Spalding 1983, 1984

;flagicon|FRG West Germany
*Arno Steffenhagen 1983

;flagicon|YUG Yugoslavia
*Ivan Lukacevic 1979, 1980
*Blagoje Tamindric 1979, 1980, 1981

;flagicon| Unknown
*Conleth Davey 1984
*George Gibbs 1979, 1980
*Charlie Mitchell 1979



Wangerin, David. Soccer in a Football World: The Story of America's Forgotten Game. WSC Book (2006).

ee also

* Toronto Lynx
* Toronto FC

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