Olivier Occean celebrates a goal for Gruether Furth.
Courtesy of SpVgg Greuther Fürth

Canadian Exports: Canucks on the move in Germany

As teams in major European leagues prepare for the quickly approaching 2012-13 season, the inevitable carousel of players coming and going to new teams is in full swing

It’s no different for Canada's contingent abroad, as a number of players will be playing for new teams next season.

Samuel Piette has already put pen to paper on a deal with Fortuna Düsseldorf and plenty of other Canadians are likely headed to different locales.

Defender Adam Straith is in the search for a new club after seeing his time at Energie Cottbus come to an end. Straith was most recently on loan at FC Saarbrucken in Germany’s 3.Bundesliga from second-division Cottbus.

Cottbus announced on Monday that they and Straith had mutually agreed to part ways, leaving the Vancouver Whitecaps Residency product unemployed for the time being.

It also seems Olivier Occean’s (above) race to the top of the 2.Bundesliga’s scoring charts with 17 goals for Greuther Fürth this past season has attracted some attention. German daily Die Welt is reporting on their website that a deal to bring Occean to Eintracht Frankfurt in the Bundesliga is imminent.

Should that deal happen, it may seem like something of a sideways move, as both Frankfurt and Occean’s current club are being promoted to Germany’s top division. However, Frankfurt have previously been a Bundesliga fixture, while Fürth will be making their debut in that league this season.

It was a quiet week of action on the pitch, as only a handful of Canadians saw action for their respective clubs.

Goalkeeper Lars Hirschfeld got back to action with Norwegian club Valerenga after the international break.

Hirschfeld started on Wednesday as Valerenga were knocked out in the third round of the Norwegian Cup with a 3-1 loss to Sandjeford. It got no better when league play resumed on Sunday as Valerenga lost 2-1 to Stabaek. Valerenga are in eighth in the Norwegian Eliteserien with 14 points from 11 games.

Defender Mason Trafford also had two games this past week for Mariehamn of the Finnish Veikkausliiga.

Trafford, who has played every minute this season, appeared in Mariehamn’s 2-0 win over table-toppers HJK last Wednesday. That was followed up with their first loss in six games, as Mariehamn were on the wrong end of a 2-0 result to KuPS on Monday.

Mariehamn are in third place with 24 points, and four points back of HJK but hold a game in hand.

Staying in Finland, forward Frank Jonke played his third game since joining Jaro, who sit in last place in the Veikkausliiga.

On Monday, Jaro picked up their second win in three games and just their third win on the season with a 1-0 victory over MyPa. Jonke played the entire game for Jaro.

In Sweden, defender Jamaal Smith played the entire game for Syrianska IF as they picked up their second win of the season in Sweden’s Division 1 – the third-highest league in the country.

The win moved Syrianska off the bottom and into 13th in the 14-team league with just seven points through 11 games. 

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