Brampton Olympians Honoured with Fields

Back in August of 2021 the City of Brampton announced that it would be dedicating two fields to homegrown Brampton Soccer Olympians and Gold Medalists Ashley Lawrence and Kadeisha Buchanan who are both currently plying their trade in France’s top division for Paris St. Germain and Olympique Lyonaisse (respectively).

On December 21st, 2021 while both professionals were home for the holidays they were treated to their field unveiling. What used to be “the two turf fields” at Creditview and Sandalwood shall henceforth be known as “Ashley Lawrence Field” and “Kadeisha Buchanan Field”.

You can read the whole story here.

One can not overstate the importance of the duo of Brampton Soccer Olympians, Ashley and Kadeisha, to Canada’s recent, unprecedented soccer success. Not just that, playing as defenders, they contributed to one of the most ardent and impenetrable defensive sides in women’s soccer history as they marched Canada straight to the podium to collect their Olympic gold, but also in the sense that they have, over the past 2 years, become the faces of Canadian Soccer along with Janine Beckie, Jessie Fleming and Adriana Leon. These are the people that the rest of the globe (outside of the US/NWSL sphere) identifies Canadian soccer with.

Being the first two Canadians to move to and secure starting positions within the planet’s two most serious and lucrative women’s teams is something that is going to ensure that the legacy of both Ashley and Kadeisha outlasts the signs we’ve recently put up next to fields in their honor.

Brampton has been an avid soccer community for decades now with thousands of players from age 4 to age 60+ participating annually and the community is finally both giving itself recognition and receiving national attention for the quantity and quality of players coming out of the city. It was only back in 2018 that Jonathan Osorio was given the key to the City by then Mayor Linda Jefferey after Toronto FC’s Championship winning season.

Furthermore, if anyone has been watching the recent exploits of the men’s national team, it’s hard to ignore the constant references to Brampton with no less than 7 national team players on any given game day roster who got their start as on Brampton pitches. Atiba Hutchinson, Jonathan Osorio, Doniel Henry, Junior Hoilett, Tajon Buchanan, Cyle Larin, Liam Millar, Ayo Akinola… all originally Bramptonians. We can now add Iké Ugbo to the list as he qualified for Canada thanks to a short stint where he lived and played in, you guessed it, Brampton.

With all these headline making names on the men’s side it’s important to remember who the trend setters were leading the line for our city. Kadeisha Buchanan and Ashley Lawrence are, arguably, the new faces of the Canadian National Women’s team. They are easily the most globally recognizable soccer personalities Canada had up until just recently when Alphonso Davies and Jonathan David stepped up helping Bayern Munich and OSC Lille win multiple titles (Domestic League, Cup and Champions League for Davies, Domestic League for David).

The best bit is that Ashley, Kadeisha and the ‘lads’ that followed suit aren’t the nadir of Brampton’s contribution to Canada’s soccer fortunes; there’s a parade of untapped young talent that’s just cresting like a tidal wave ready to break and wash away the competition. (See a list of some notable players that participated in BAS.)

You can read more about Brampton’s future soccer hopefuls and history here.

Or, if you’ve read enough, just watch this MLS produced video about Canada’s Soccer City.