Opportunities on the pitch

Kaila Novak

In its constant quest to create opportunities for London soccer players, FC LONDON continues to assist in the mental and physical training of athletes as they look to make a positive impact at provincial and national levels. And players such as Kaila Novak, Dante Carraro, and Emaly Martin have taken the next steps in their soccer careers and are catching the eyes of coaches across the country.

“This is exactly why we spend our time, energy and money on this program,” says FC LONDON founder Ian Campbell. “Creating opportunities for others is our goal, and to see that we have achieved so much in a short period of time is encouraging as we build a culture where effort brings success – both on and off the field.”

As a 15-year-old leading scorer with FC LONDON U21 last year (and an ongoing call-up to the League1 squad), Kaila Novak has now entered the REX program, specifically developed for elite female players in Ontario. Now living in Toronto, she trains every day and works on strategy sessions with the top coaches in the province. And her talent in scoring goals has earned her a position with the National U17 team, which recently competed in the CONCACAF Women’s U17 competition in Nicaragua. Kaila didn’t disappoint in her National Team debut, scoring two goals in a 3-0 defeat of Bermuda.

Further, younger FC LONDON goalkeepers are also making their presence known in the Ontario Provincial program, with Dante Carraro being selected to represent the province in the U14 squad, and Emaly Martin being selected for the U16 squad. Both players have been part of the London TFC Academy program and will no doubt continue on to greater success in League1. London TFC Academy goalkeepers train with their team and also participate in exclusive goalkeeper training led by former National Team goalkeeper Robert Stillo.

“Since the majority of a goalkeeper’s participation in any game is with their feet, it’s important for them to train as much with their feet and learn positional play as with their reflexes and their hands,” says Stillo.

As the League1 season starts to kick off, the FC LONDON Women’s team looks to recreate the success of previous seasons as they continue their run for another championship.

“We’ve had limited turnover on the women’s side compared to last year, which means we can continue to train and work in a style which is familiar to the players,” says the club’s head coach, Mike Marcoccia. “The season has been shortened slightly this year so that there isn’t as big an impact in the fall when players leave for school.”

FC LONDON is proud to be wearing the Toronto FC RED as their home colour this year, adorned with new premium sponsor Libro Financial.

“It’s great to have Libro involved,” says Campbell. “Their vision of creating financial opportunities is in sync with what we do as a club to create opportunities for players.”

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Submitted by FC LONDON