Canadian Exports: Ledgerwood headed to Hammarby
Nik Ledgerwood is on the move.
After playing his entire professional career in Germany, the midfielder (above) is going to play in a different country for the first time after signing a contract in Sweden.
Ledgerwood’s contract ended with Wehen Wiesbaden at the end of June, and this past week he finalized a deal to join Hammarby IF in Sweden’s second flight, where he'll be coached by former US international Gregg Berhalter. He’ll have to find match fitness quickly as Hammarby are in the middle of their season and Ledgerwood hasn’t played since the German league season ended in May.
Hammarby are scheduled to play on July 23.
On the field, one Canadian was involved in European competition as the UEFA Europa League works through its qualification rounds. Forward Riley O’Neill scored as Finnish side MyPa beat Welsh team Cefn Druids 5-0 in the second leg of the first qualifying round last Thursday. After a scoreless first leg the week before, MyPa go through to the second qualifying round, where they’ll meet Romanian side Rapid Bucharest, with the first leg scheduled for July 24.
If they’re able to get through that round, they could come up against some of Europe's giants, with the likes of Liverpool or Inter Milan looming in the third round of qualifying.
In league play, O’Neill was on the mark again as he scored MyPa’s only goal in a 3-1 loss to Haka. MyPa are in fifth place in the Veikkausliiga table.
Still in Finland, Mason Trafford’s Mariehamn is going through a poor run of form, causing them to slip in their quest for the top spot. On Monday, they fell 2-0 to Lahti. While still in third place and still just three points out of first, Mariehamn are winless in three games.
At the bottom of the Veikkausliiga table lie Jaro, where Canadian forward Frank Jonke plies his trade. Jonke played the full 90 on Sunday as Jaro lost 2-0 to Honka.
Jaro are in last place in the 12-team league but are level on points with KuPS for 11th but have an inferior goal differential. Getting into 11th would mean Jaro are safe from relegation.
Two leagues down in the Finnish Kakkonen, a trio of Canadians had mixed results last week.
Midfieder Kennedy Owusu-Ansah scored the winner as SALPA beat ESPA. Elsewhere, defender Roger Thompson played the full 90 minutes for VIFK in their 1-1 draw with TPV and Massimo Mirabelli started and played 60 minutes in EIF’s 3-0 win over GrlFK.
Over in Norway, goalkeeper Lars Hirschfeld had an up-and-down week with club side Vålerenga. Hirschfeld was in goal last Wednesday as his team beat Odd Grenland 3-2, but they couldn’t keep that momentum going, however, as they fell 2-1 to Molde on Saturday.
Vålerenga have 21 points through 15 games in the Eliteserien season which puts them in sixth place in the 16-team league.
In the Swedish Division 1, defender Jamaal Smith only had to endure the first half as he was substituted at halftime as his team Syrianska IF was thumped 7-0 by Sirius. Syrianska sit in 12th place in the 14-team league and just one point back of 11th and safety from relegation.
In Singapore, forward Jordan Webb had a good week for both himself and his club. Webb scored the winner in second half stoppage time last Wednesday as his team Hougang United beat Geylang United 2-1.
Webb was held off the scoreboard in Hougang’s game on Saturday against Balestier Khalsa, but his teammates stepped up and Hougang won 3-0. Hougang sit in eighth place in the 13-team S-League.