Ramόn Soria may be new to Edmonton, but his debut for the club won’t be the first time he’s taken to the pitch at Clarke Stadium.
“I know FC Edmonton quite well after playing for three years in the NASL (North American Soccer League),” explained the 29-year-old defender. “FC Edmonton used to have competitive teams every season and it was very demanding playing against them, especially at home where they were very strong.”
Soria’s previous North American experience includes a season with Ottawa Fury FC in 2014 and two years with Puerto Rico FC in 2016 & 2017, where he was the captain. The Villarreal youth product has also played professionally in his native Spain, Norway and Slovenia.
“I describe myself as a very competitive player with very good technical skill,” Soria said. “I’m pretty intense when it comes to defense, and I think I have a great work ethic and intelligence about the game.”
“He’ll be the best passing defender in the CPL, and his ability with the ball, his technique, is fantastic,” said FC Edmonton Head Coach and Director of Soccer Operations Jeff Paulus. “He’s also a left-sided player, which are so difficult to find.”
Soria had been on Paulus’ radar since he was named the Head Coach, as he looked for someone to anchor the backline, whether as the left centreback in a back four, or a left-sided defender if the team decided to go with three at the back.
“He was an Under-17 Spanish International, and with the million players in that country, to even get to that level, you’ve got to have something, and he still does.”
Soria said there was a mutual understanding between the two during their early conversations, and their past knowledge of one another helped to strike a deal.
“He talked to me about the new league and the style of play he wanted for the team,” described Soria. “It was not a tough decision to say yes.”
“I have great memories from Canada. It is a country I love and wanted to come back to one day. Now, I have the opportunity to join a new era in Canadian football and I am delighted to be part of it.”
While having played in Edmonton before, Soria admits he doesn’t actually know too much about the city itself, as there wasn’t a lot of time to explore during his previous whirlwind trips.
“Former players have always spoken highly about the club and the city,” Soria said. “I have been informed there are many beautiful places to visit around Edmonton.”
Still a month away from pre-season, Soria already has high expectations for his first season with FC Edmonton, saying he can’t wait to play in front of the fans at Clarke Stadium and make an impact.
“The first year will always be remembered, and we have the opportunity to start writing the history of the league,” pointed out Soria. “Playing in the Canadian Championship, which gives a berth into the CONCACAF Champions League, is also very exciting.”
“It will be very hard to beat the other CPL Clubs and MLS (Major League Soccer) clubs, but it is football and anything is possible. We will play to be competitive in every game and to win.”
FC Edmonton is a proud member of the Canadian Premier League, which kicks off on April 27, 2019. Season tickets begin at just $240! For more information, head to our website – https://fcedmonton.canpl.ca/season-tickets/