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Monday, August 20, 2012

Foreign Premiership players: Canada

In the twenty years since the English Premier League was launched, it has led to numerous changes in the domestic football landscape, with one of the most notable ones proving to be the influx of players from other countries. Opinion has been divided on the merits of this, with some arguing that it has clearly improved the quality of the football on offer as well as increasing the global appeal of the league, while others point to the damage it has done in limiting opportunities for young English players.

However, it is unlikely that anyone betting on matters Premiership-related with sports betting or online casino sites would wager on this situation changing any time soon. Another thing they would be unlikely to put money on would be the notion that Canada will become a major source of Premiership playing talent.

This is not to say that there have been no notable Canadian players in the Premiership era, but certainly the country lags well behind other ones when it comes to the places that have produced the most Premiership imports. There are a number of reasons for this, but probably the most significant one is simply that football is still not really the top sport in Canada, which means it is far less likely to produce large numbers of top players. One notable Canadian player currently gracing the Premier League stage is Simeon Jackson of Norwich City who – having helped that team to gain promotion in 2010/11 then helped them to survive that initial season. He is currently the only regular Canadian first team player in the Premier League.

Prior to Jackson’s arrival, probably the most notable Canadian player in the league was Tomasz Radzinsky, who played for both Everton and Fulham. He enjoyed most success at the Goodison Park club, helping them to a seventh place finish in 2003, and briefly partnering the emerging Wayne Rooney in attack for the Toffees. He proved to be a striker capable of the spectacular, but unfortunately just as capable of squandering far easier opportunities.