Welcome to CPL50, a series where we’ll reveal the top 50 players from the 2021 Canadian Premier League regular season, as voted on by a panel of coaches from all eight teams and media from OneSoccer and CanPL.ca.
For more information on the voting process and method, click here.
It’s two Eddies in a row in CPL50, as Fraser Aird clocks in at number 36 in the countdown.
The veteran wide man was a key addition to Alan Koch’s attack at FC Edmonton this season, as he went on to play in every single game for the club in 2021. Despite logging a lot of his minutes at right fullback, Aird scored five goals and contributed five assists in his 28 matches played. His 6.03 expected assists was highest in the entire CPL, as he proved to be a fantastic creative player from the flanks for FCE.
Aird also led the league in crosses by an enormous margin with 236 — the closest player behind him having just 139 — and he was an outstanding set-piece threat with his delivery from corners and free kicks. The 26-year-old was also tireless defensively, playing a gritty brand of football without the ball and constantly looking to win it back for his side.
Plus, Aird scored one of the greatest goals of the 2021 season back in the Winnipeg bubble:
OH MY, Fraser Aird! ? ?@FCEdmontonNow take a 1-0 lead over @YorkUtdFC!#CanPL | ? https://t.co/hishXepRT3 pic.twitter.com/mhlREAsFZ5
— OneSoccer (@onesoccer) July 5, 2021
The Toronto native came to the Eddies in late 2020 with a very impressive footballing resume, having spent eight years of his professional career playing in Scotland with clubs like Rangers FC, Falkirk, and Dundee United, before returning to Canada to play for Valour FC in the 2020 season. He also has eight caps for the Canadian national team, having scored a goal for his country against Scotland — who he represented at several youth levels — in a 2017 friendly.
The rest of the CPL50 countdown is available here. Five more players will be revealed per day until December 22.