The Canadian Soccer Association (CSA) announced today that Vancouver Whitecaps FC striker Randy Edwini-Bonsu has been called up to the Canada’s men's national team for this month's training camp in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Born in Kumasi, Ghana, the native of Edmonton, Alberta, joins Stephen Hart's 19-player senior squad after completing a similar training camp with Canada's U-23 Olympic team last week. A product of the Whitecaps Residency program, Edwini-Bonsu started and scored the opening goal for the U-23 squad during a behind-closed-doors friendly versus the Honduran men's national team in Sunrise, Florida. Honduras won Saturday's friendly 3-1.
The striker joins goalkeeper Michal Misiewicz and midfielder Derek Gaudet in moving from the U-23 squad to the senior team this week. Hart's squad also includes former Whitecaps captain and centre back Adrian Cann, while former Whitecaps men's team head coach Tony Fonseca and former Whitecaps goalkeeper Paul Dolan are also in Florida as part of Hart's coaching staff.
Having started their camp on Monday, Canada will train in Fort Lauderdale until Friday, January 29, before heading to the Caribbean for their international friendly versus Jamaica in Kingston on Sunday, January 31.
Edwini-Bonsu earns his first senior international call-up following a promising 2009 campaign with the Whitecaps men's team. Having initially made his debut during the 2008 season with limited minutes, the striker made 15 substitute appearances last year for the Blue and White. The speedy striker scored his first men's team goal during the first leg of the Whitecaps first round playoff series versus Carolina RailHawks on September 24. His match winner helped the Whitecaps win the playoff series 1-0 on aggregate.
The striker was also one of seven Whitecaps players to be named in Canada's 20-player squad for the 2009 CONCACAF U-20 Championship in Trinidad & Tobago. The striker started all three of Canada's group matches versus hosts Trinidad & Tobago, Mexico, and Costa Rica. This included both goals in Canada's 2-0 win over Mexico on March 9. Unfortunately, Canada's results in Group B meant they missed out on qualification for the 2009 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Egypt. Edwini-Bonsu has also earned 14 caps for Canada at the U-17 international level between April 2006 and May 2007.
About Vancouver Whitecaps FCIn 1974, Vancouver Whitecaps FC played their inaugural season in the North American Soccer League, and in 1979, the club won the NASL Soccer Bowl championship. From 1987 to 1992, as a member of the Canadian Soccer League, Vancouver won four straight CSL titles. In 2002, the Whitecaps created a full club model that encompasses professional teams for men and women, extensive youth development and grassroots participation programs, facility development, and the Whitecaps Foundation to support specific initiatives related to health and wellness through soccer. Since 2004, the Whitecaps have won two United Soccer Leagues First Division championships and two USL W-League championships. As a member of the new NASL, the Whitecaps will play in a second division league established and administered by the United States Soccer Federation. In 2011, Vancouver will play their inaugural season in Major League Soccer.