Home Global Game Europe Teammates in NASL, teammates in Ireland: Farago credits Keegan for helping open the door at St. Patrick’s

Teammates in NASL, teammates in Ireland: Farago credits Keegan for helping open the door at St. Patrick’s

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Jake Keegan: If you’re reading this article, know that, during the course of the interview, Tyson Farago said that he’d take you out for a “nice dinner.”  Hold him to it!

For everyone else reading: Why does Canadian goalkeeper Tyson Farago owe Keegan dinner? Well, Keegan helped Farago land a job with St Patrick’s Athletic in Dublin. Keegan and Farago were teammates at FC Edmonton; and, when the club suspended its professional program in 2018, both were looking for jobs. Keegan was a known commodity in Ireland, where he’d played professionally before making the move to NASL. And, as Keegan was talking to St. Patrick’s management, he mentioned that Farago might also be a good fit for the team. So, the manager looked at Farago’s video clips — and was impressed. So, instead of targeting one member of the FCE diaspora, St. Patrick’s ended up targeting two.

“St. Pat’s was actively following Jake,” said Farago over the phone from Ireland. “Jake then recommended me to the gaffer (Liam Buckley).”

And, so, the two are now teammates at St. Patrick’s which currently sits in fifth place with 10 points out of seven matches, three behind Shamrock Rovers and their Canadian goalkeeper, Tomer Chencinski. (In fact, Chencinski got a clean sheet for Rovers in a 1-0 victory over St. Patrick’s a little less than two weeks ago).

Barry Murphy has been starting in goal for St. Patrick’s, but Farago is hoping to push for the No. 1 shirt.

“There will be a big competition for the number-one spot,” said Farago. “Basically, one of the reasons I was brought in was to help elevate the level of play in the goalkeeping crew.”

Farago is signed with St. Patrick’s for one season.

Farago is happy to have found a job. When NASL as a league first delayed the start of the season, then announced it wasn’t going to play at all in 2018, it created a glut of professional players on the market. Many flocked to USL looking for work. So, in North America, a buyer’s market was created. Some of the FCE players have found work in USL, like Tomi Ameobi in Cincinnati or Mauro Eustaquio and Pedro Galvao at Penn FC. Defender Albert Watson made the move to Iceland. Former captain Nik Ledgerwood is with Calgary Foothills. But many are still looking for work.

“Right now, the owners have all the power,” said Farago. “There are so many players out there, and they’re all saying, ‘pick me,’ ‘pick me.’” And that means owners know they don’t have to raise their contract offers because players are simply looking for work. It’s not like they have as many options as they used to.

So, when news came that FC Edmonton wasn’t going to have a professional team in 2018, Farago had to wait a month for a contract option to expire and then spent two to three months looking around in an overcrowded market. 

Farago hopes that a new Canadian Premier League will help.

“I’ll definitely be following it,” he says. “I hope the Canadian Premier League can stabilize the market in North America, especially for Canadians.”

Of course, having signed a contract with St. Patrick’s, Farago’s focus is on his new European career. And that means impressing at his new club, and keeping a strict training regimen. That means no late nights — so he won’t be able to watch his hometown Winnipeg Jets in the playoffs. He’ll just have to be happy to see the highlight packages after he wakes up in the mornings.

 

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