VANCOUVER — So much for nice guys finishing last. The personality trait has never stood in Martin Nash’s way.
In fact, it was one of many enduring qualities which made the Vancouver Whitecaps midfielder the obvious choice for team captain this season.
“Martin was a natural selection,” said coach Teitur Thordarson, who informed the United Soccer Leagues First Division team of his decision on Friday, but only made it public on Monday. “He’s a respected player on and off the field and has great experience in the league. Something that was very important to me is how good he is at helping the younger players. Add he’s a genuinely nice guy. I’m happy to have him as our captain.”
Nash is Vancouver’s 19th captain since the team’s first season in 1974. He takes over from Jeff Clarke, who was released by the club in the off-season. Nash served as an alternate captain last season and filled in admirably when Clarke was out of the lineup due to injury.
The move should come as no surprise. Nash is one of only two current players to be a member of the Whitecaps’ 2006 and 2008 USL championship squads.
“I never really thought about it but coming into camp, but once training started I thought the opportunity might be there,” said Nash, 33, who is in his ninth season with Vancouver and 15th as a professional soccer player. “It was an honour to be asked and I think it’s the right time in my career for such a role.”