FADI SALBACK A HIT WITH FC VORKUTA AND UNIVERSITY FOOTBALL
PICTURE: FC Vorkuta striker Fadi Salback has been a first year hit for FC Vorkuta and the Canadian university soccer community where he received the Rookie of the Year Award from the national governing body for university sports across Canada.
Canadian Soccer League teams have a long history of signing established professional players from abroad and a similar reputation for assisting in the development of young players for higher levels in Canada and other countries in many parts of the world.
A peak period for exceptional young players in the CSL came during the 2009 – 2012 three-season period when 40 CSL players of various nationalities were selected for several national teams, most in the under 21 and under 23 rosters.
Today, there are a number of promising young players scattered throughout the CSL and several have come to the forefront following outstanding play at university while also playing in the CSL during the 2019 season.
Fadi Salback, a striker with FC Vorkuta and standout with Ontario Tech University in Oshawa was honoured at a championship banquet at Montreal in November when he received the U- SPORTS Rookie of the Year Award. U-SPORTS is the national governing body for university sports across Canada.
Salback scored a record 16 goals for Ontario Tech in his first season and the all-Canadian Rookie of the Year was also named an east division first team all star. Six of Salback’s goals in 2019 were game winners.
The Israeli-born forward scored four goals in his 2019 CSL Second Division debut with FC Vorkuta reserves and was quickly moved to the first team scoring six goals in five appearances.
Salback, 22, was a young academy player with Maccabi Haifa, a top professional club in Israel known for its youth development programs before moving to Canada. His father, Nabil Salback was a professional footballer in Israel. Now a resident of Bowmanville, Ontario, Fadi was selected to the Ontario U-16 squad before entering Ontario Tech University to study software engineering. He was signed by FC Vorkuta in April, 2019 after being spotted by FC Vorkuta while playing in the Thornhill indoor league just north of Toronto during the winter months.
“Fadi was playing for our opposition at the time and he stood out. We were pleased to sign him and he’s now considered one of our top assets with real promise for the future,” said FC Vorkuta GM Samad Kadirov.
Salback explains that his one season in the CSL has advanced his game and he has signed for the upcoming 2020 season. “It’s more physical, with pace and is more competitive and I’ve benefitted from that. And by the way, I’ve appreciated the FC Vorkuta environment, the people as well as the players have been great,” he said.
The CSL regular season kicks off mid-May through to September with playoffs and the CSL Championship final in October.
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