Saturday, December 29, 2012

Happy Holidays!

I just wanted to wish my readers a Happy New Years! I hope that everyone has enjoyed the holidays so far! I have had a very relaxing and enjoyable time at home with family and friends. I'm looking forward to what 2013 brings and will keep you all posted on the latest. Watch this space...


Saturday, August 25, 2012

Red Nation Online - Post 4

Below you can read my latest column for RNO. You can also find my column on: 

RNO - Column 
In These Boots:
Putting on the Red and White

Columbus Crew, Canadian Soccer League

I’m currently on my summer break, following my recent trip to Central America with the Canadian Men’s National Futsal team. A month or so has passed since the trip and I’ve had some time to reflect on my recent experiences. There are so many great memories I can take away from the trip. Playing for Canada is something that I’ve dreamt about for as long as I can remember. The opportunity to represent your country is such an honor and I’m so proud to say I’ve had that chance. Growing up I used to imagine what it would be like to put on the Red and White Jersey and look down and see the Canadian Maple leaf on my chest. I will never forget the feeling of doing that for the first time. I’ve never felt as much pride and feeling of accomplishment, as I do when I walk out on the field and sing the Canadian National Anthem.

My journey with this team began earlier this year, when I was invited to attend a training camp with National Futsal team in Richmond, BC. I had a great experience at that camp and learned so much from the coaching staff. At the time we knew it was a possibility the next time we would be seeing each other would be for the World Cup Qualifiers later in the year. While I was in Norway, this was always in the back of my mind and it was a goal of mine to be in the best shape possible when this trip came a long. I was working hard while trialing with various clubs, but I also did a lot of extra training on my own to prepare for this trip. When I got the news that I was called up for this trip, it was a very exciting moment for me.

We met up in San Jose, Costa Rica for a weeklong training camp. I had met lots of the players before at the training camp earlier in the year, but there were also some new faces on the team. I flew in from Norway and the other players came in from all across Canada, as well as USA, Germany and Portugal. The team was an interesting mix of players young and old, with varying degrees of Futsal experience. We had to gel together quickly. With little time to prepare for qualifiers, we were thrown straight into things, with intense double sessions everyday. We had so much to go over and so much to learn. There are so many differences from outdoor soccer to Futsal. Player rotation and set plays are key to success in the indoor game. After a few days of training together, we had our first game together as a team, an International Friendly against Costa Rica; one of the top teams in CONCACAF. It was a great first test for us and we did very well. We lost the game 2-1, but were still happy, as there were many positives to take from the game. The following day, we played Costa Rica again and played a very good first half. Unfortunately the game finished with a 4-0 loss for us, but we knew what we needed to work on going forward.

The next chapter of the trip was a very exciting one. After a hard week of training and games in Costa Rica, we were off to Guatemala City for Futsal World Cup Qualifiers. Going into it, we knew we had a tough task ahead. We had to beat El Salvador in a two-game playoff, in order to qualify for the 2012 CONCACAF Futsal Championships the following week, also in Guatemala City. The top four teams from the CONCACAF Futsal Championships qualified for the World Cup in November. We knew that we couldn’t even think about the CONCACAF tournament until after beating El Salvador. The first game against El Salvador was a very strange one. We absolutely dominated the match in terms of possession and opportunities, but we didn’t finish our chances. El Salvador had very few chances, but capitalized on the ones that they did have. We ended up losing the game 4-1 and were extremely disappointed after the game. However we knew that we didn’t have much time to dwell on the result, with the second game the next day.

There was a great sense of belief in the team and we had the confidence in one another to beat El Salvador and reach our first goal of qualifying for the CONCACAF Futsal Championships. In the second game, we came out flying and were up 4-0 (5-4 on aggregate) in the second half. Again we had completely dominated the game and thoroughly deserved to be in the lead. We conceded a sloppy goal with two minutes remaining and another goal with thirty seconds left on the clock, to put us down 6-5 on aggregate. We stayed calm and went down the other way and scored to tie it up with fifteen seconds left. We then went down the field and scored again with five seconds remaining to take the lead 7-6 on aggregate. What a moment. The final five seconds of the game were the longest imaginable, and when the final whistle went it was one of the greatest moments of my career. This game was full of emotions on both sides and the contrast between the two teams at the final whistle said it all. We were running around celebrating and congratulating each other, while most of the Salvadoran players were lying on the field crying. My parents were waiting for me in the stands and to have them there to experience this moment meant everything to me. It was such a special moment for us, and a very emotional night; I’ll never forget it.

In the CONCACAF Futsal Championships, we were drawn in a group with Guatemala, USA and Panama. From there, the top two teams in each group advanced to the tournament Semi-Finals, but more importantly earned a berth at the Futsal World Cup. It doesn’t get much more difficult than playing Guatemala, the hosts and defending champions, in your first game. But we were ready for it. Another moment I will never forget from this trip, was standing in the tunnel before this game. The noise inside the arena was electric; it gave me goose bumps walking out onto the field. We went out and battled and went up 2-0 early on, and went into half time with a 3-3 draw; which not many people expected us to do. We ended up losing the game 7-4, but once again there were many positives to take from the game. The following day we played USA, and took the lead again. We lost the game 3-2, however I believe we deserved a result from this one. It was a tough tournament to play in, with games every day and the trip definitely started to take its toll on our bodies after a while. For the last game, we knew we still had a chance of qualifying for the World Cup if Guatemala beat USA, and if we beat Panama by three goals or more. Unfortunately we ended up losing this game 8-5.

Although it was very disappointing not to qualify for the Futsal World Cup, there were so many things that we could be proud of ourselves for. We will always be able to remember our victory over El Salvador in the playoffs and reaching our first goal of qualifying for the CONCACAF Futsal Championships, becoming the first Canadian team to ever do so. On a personal level, it was a dream come true and an honor to get the chance to represent Canada. I hope that it will be the first of many times. Going forward with the Futsal team, we have something great to build from and I hope to be an important part of this team in the future. It was a great trip and one that I will never forget. The Canadian Soccer Association did a great job putting together this team and making things run as smoothly as they did. Everything was done in such a professional manner, that we didn’t have to worry about anything on the trip, other than our jobs on the field. The coaching staff was great to play for and they taught us so much. I also couldn’t have asked for a better group of guys to go on this trip with; I hope that I’ll get the opportunity to play with them all again soon. Now that I’ve had a taste of what it’s like to represent my country, I want it to happen again. I hope that in the future I will also get the opportunity to represent Canada in outdoor soccer and I will keep working hard to develop as a player and work my way up the ladder, until that chance comes.

In the final game against Panama, I picked up an ankle injury in a collision with my own keeper in the first half. Luckily it happened in the final game of the tournament and not the first. My summer break in Norway happened to fall right after this tournament, so following the tournament, I had some much needed time off at home in Vancouver. As I’m writing this column I’m currently in London, where I have spent the last week checking out the Olympics. It’s been a fantastic experience for me and I’m so glad I got the opportunity to come and see London during this time. I want to take this chance to congratulate the Canadian Women’s National team on their Bronze Medal performance. The team is a truly special group and I know they have inspired the next generation of Canadian footballers to achieve great things. I managed to get tickets to the Women’s Football Gold Medal game at Wembley and I was very proud to have the chance to see the Women receive their Bronze medals.

I’m looking forward to getting back to Norway and getting established in my team. There are only around two months remaining in the season and I want to finish the season strong. After having some time to rest and let my body heal, I’m feeling great and ready to go. As always, I’m looking forward to my next adventure, and seeing what this game brings my way next.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Domo Polideportivo, Guatemala City

Walking into the Domo Polideportivo where the CONCACAF Futsal Championships take place & we open the tournament against Guatemala on Monday night! This place is going to be packed! We're ready... TEAM CANADA!!!

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Watch CONCACAF Futsal Championships Online

To watch a live stream of all of our games at the 2012 CONCACAF Futsal Championships, you can register for free at: It's easy, all you have to do is go to the above link, click "register now" and fill out a few details. We open the tournament on Monday evening at 10 PM Eastern time (8 PM Local time) against Guatemala. You can see the schedule for the entire tournament below. Go Canada!

2012 CONCACAF Futsal Championship
At Guatemala City

Times U.S. Eastern (local time in parentheses)
Group A: Guatemala, United States, Panama, Canada 
Group B: Cuba, Mexico, Costa Rica, St. Kitts and Nevis
Monday, July 2
Mexico vs. Costa Rica, noon (10 a.m.)
St. Kitts & Nevis vs. Cuba, 2 p.m. (noon)
United States vs. Panama, 8 p.m. (6 p.m.)
Guatemala vs. Canada, 10 p.m. (8 p.m.)
Tuesday, July 3
Mexico vs. St. Kitts & Nevis, noon (10 a.m.)
Cuba vs. Costa Rica, 2 p.m. (noon)
Canada vs. United States, 8 p.m. (6 p.m.)
Guatemala vs. Panama, 10 p.m. (8 p.m.)
Wednesday, July 4
Costa Rica vs. St. Kitts & Nevis, noon (10 a.m.)
Cuba vs. Mexico, 2 p.m. (noon)
Panama vs. Canada, 8 p.m. (6 p.m.)
Guatemala vs. United States, 10 p.m. (8 p.m.)
Friday, July 6

Group B winner vs. Group A runner-up, 8 p.m. (6 p.m.)
Group A winner vs. Group B runner-up, 10 p.m. (8 p.m.)
Sunday, July 8
Third-Place Match
Semifinal losers, 6 p.m. (4 p.m.)
Semifinal winners, 8 p.m. (6 p.m.)

Canada Vs El Salvador

Hello from Guatemala City! We played a two-game playoff against El Salvador this week, with games on Thursday and Friday. The winner of the series was decided on total goals (aggregate). The first game was a strange one, we dominated the game and had much more possession and shots than El Salvador; however, we lost 4-1. It was disappointing, but we knew that we didn't have much time to think about it with the next game the day after. It was do or die, and we knew that we had to go out and play the game of our lives. Again in the second game, we controlled the game and were up 4-0 in the second half (5-4 on aggregate). However, El Salvador scored twice in the final minutes, including a goal with 35 seconds to go (putting them up 6-5 on aggregate). We then went down the other way and scored with 15 seconds to go to tie the game, and then again with 5 seconds left on the clock to win the game. It was absolutely unbelievable. Definitely the most emotions I have ever experienced during a game and the best moment of my career so far. I'm so proud of the team and the way that we played yesterday. Every single guy on the team came together and played their hearts out. You had to be there to experience what this game was really like, but it was something truly special. With the win we advance to the CONCACAF Futsal Championships next week, which also take place here in Guatemala City. We are the first Canadian team to ever advance to the CONCACAF Futsal Championships. We will open the tournament against hosts Guatemala on Monday night, and play against the USA on Tuesday, and Panama on Wednesday. From there, the top two teams advance to the tournament semi-finals, and also book a place to the 2012 FIFA Futsal World Cup in Thailand. What a day and what a game. I'm so proud to be here representing Canada and to be a part of this team. More to come later...

Concacaf Main | CONCACAF Home | Tournaments | Futsal | News | News | Late goal sends Canada to futsal finals

Concacaf Main | CONCACAF Home | Tournaments | Futsal | News | News | Late goal sends Canada to futsal finals

Red Nation Online - Post 3 & Press

You can read my latest column for Red Nation Online here:

Also, here are a few articles in the news that have come out recently about my trip with the Canadian National Futsal team:

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Checking in from Costa Rica

I’m currently with the Canadian Men’s National Futsal team, sitting at the airport in San Jose, Costa Rica, waiting to board a plane to Guatemala City, Guatemala. We’ve spent the last week in Costa Rica preparing for the 2012 CONCACAF Qualifying tournament, which serves as Qualifiers for the 2012 FIFA Futsal World Cup in Thailand. Training has gone well and we also played two friendly games against Costa Rica’s National team, in preparation for the tournament. It’s great to be here with the team and so far things have gone well for us. The games against Costa Rica were a very good experience and there are many positives to take from the games. The first game against Costa Rica was my first game representing Canada, and it was a truly great feeling. I will always remember that day. In Guatemala City, we play against El Salvador in a two-game preliminary series and the winner advances to the final eight-team CONCACAF Qualifying tournament, which takes place the next week also in Guatemala City. From there the top two teams in each group advances to the semi-finals of the tournament and also books a place to the 2012 FIFA Futsal World Cup. As a team, we are very excited to arrive in Guatemala and get started. 

Wednesday, June 13, 2012


It’s nice to be getting settled into my new club Nesodden. I really enjoy the training and being around the club. I haven’t been able to play my first game for the club yet, as we are still waiting for the paperwork to go through. However I’m sure that will come very soon, hopefully within the next couple days. Nesodden is a peninsula in the Oslo Fjord. You can either drive there (around 45 minutes) or you can take a ferry from downtown Oslo (10-20 minutes, depending on the boat). Some of the players live in Nesodden, but many of the players live in Oslo and commute to training.

The club has been in good form recently, currently sitting in 4th place in the Division, 6 points off the leaders, with one game in hand. During the winter I had the opportunity to train with quite a few different clubs and I have to say it’s a nice feeling to sign with a new club and settle down. Getting in a routine is very beneficial for my training and I have found the level of training at the club very good so far. There are many talented players in the squad and the coaching staff seems to always be coming up with diverse training sessions for us. The training sessions are hard work of course, but there is often a good mix of fun involved. For example, sometimes the theme for training can be very high intensity small-sided games, where the focus is mostly fitness. There is often fitness components incorporated into every session in some way or another. Some days will be mostly on team shape and tactics for the upcoming game. Other days will be more focused on technical work or crossing/finishing. We work on passing drills and technique a lot, which I think is very important. The team tries to play a quick short passing game and it's refreshing to come into a team at this level, that still works on the basics almost everyday. We play a lot of different variations of possession games, this is usually part of the training every single day and is also one of my favourite activities. After the team had a great result in their game on the weekend, we had a light session the next day and had a football tennis tournament. 

Everyday is something different, which is crucial for keeping it interesting and exciting for the players. I really like the way the training sessions are laid out and structured here. There’s clearly a lot of thought put into every day’s training schedule. I know that I will be able to improve my game at this club. I want to say again how nice and welcoming everyone at the club has been to me so far. I have nothing but good things to say about the club at this point and I’m looking forward to playing my first game for Nesodden.

Until next time,

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Nesodden IF

I have some good news to report, I signed yesterday with Nesodden IF of the Norwegian Second Division. I’m very excited and looking forward to this opportunity. I've spent the last little while in Norway, training with various clubs and looking for the right fit, and I believe I’ve found it with Nesodden. I’m very impressed with the clubs professionalism and the way they do things. Everyone at the club (coaches/players/staff) have been very friendly and have made me feel very welcome. I’m looking forward to getting started and playing for Nesodden. More to come soon!


Thursday, May 17, 2012

17 Mai - Norwegian National Day

Gratulerer med Dagen Norge! May 17th is the Norwegian National Day, celebrating when Norway became an independent nation on May 17th, 1814. There are many celebrations in all communities across the country on this day every year. Most towns will have parades with students from the local schools and marching bands. In one of my recent posts, I spoke about the tradition of "Russ" and today marks the final day of that period, so a lot of focus is on the students participating in Russ. Everyone dresses up in their traditional outfits and heads out to celebrate. This is my second time being in Norway on May 17th, and my first time being in Oslo for this special day. With Oslo being the capital city, this is where the biggest parade and celebrations can be seen, and are also nationally televised. I went down to the city centre and mostly walked around Carl Johans Gate (the main street in downtown Oslo, leading up to the Royal palace). This was by far the most people I've ever seen in downtown Oslo, it was absolutely packed. It was almost impossible to move in certain areas of the city. It was interesting to see the parade and what a big deal it is to everyone involved. I have to say I felt slightly under dressed, as most people were wearing their formal clothes and I was just wearing my normal everyday clothes; but I wasn't the only one! Pretty much every person in the city that was walking around, was waving a Norwegian flag. There was red everywhere, as you can see in my pictures below. Once again, another great experience for me and something unique that I've gotten to experience during my time in Norway.