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Atletico Ottawa Ballou Tabla 2022

Ballou’s Back: Star Forward Tabla Returns To Atletico Ottawa

By on January 22, 2024 0 1348 Views

Ballou Tabla is back in the Canadian Premier League, signing a big and bold three-year deal with Atletico Ottawa.

The star winger has completed his return to the nation’s capital after recently leaving the setup at Turkish side Manisa FK last week. It hasn’t taken long for the former Barcelona prospect quickly to renew terms with the CPL side that had sold him last year, with Club President Fernando Lopez even teasing Tabla’s return a few days ago.

Atletico Ottawa Ballou Table
Photo Credit: John Jacques

“We’re delighted to announce the return of Ballou Tabla to Atletico Ottawa,” said Lopez on today’s big signing. “He’s the type of player who’s worth the admission fee alone, showcasing his talent during our title-winning run in 2022.”

It’s fair to say that Tabla had reignited his career with Atletico Ottawa, whom he helped finish as regular season champions en route to their first CPL Final appearance back in 2022. The fast-footed attacker contributed seven goals and five assists during that season, triggering interest from abroad that saw him sold well before his three-year deal came to completion.

“Ballou epitomizes Atletico’s ambition and the top-tier talent we strive to attract. He has a special bond with our supporters, and we expect them to be on the edge of their seats with Ballou back in Ottawa,” adds Lopez.

The forward had started well with Manisa after the club acquired him, tallying three goals and two assists in fourteen appearances. His follow-up campaign saw his minutes dip drastically, however, though he still managed one goal in seven off-the-bench league appearances before leaving earlier this month.

Atletico Ottawa Ballou Tabla

Tabla – who has been capped twice by the Canadian national team – has had a rollercoaster of valuations throughout his career so far: after starting his career with CF Montreal, Barcelona signed him on a contract that featured an incredible €25 million buyout clause.

Failing to break into the first team at the fabled La Liga side, Tabla returned to CF Montreal but left following the expiry of his contract two years later. Atletico Ottawa moved quickly to sign him on a three-year deal, though he was sold after just one prolific season in the nation’s capital.

Flashback: Tabla on Ottawa – ‘I Will Carry Those Moments With Me’

“His versatility, experience, and winning mentality not only contribute to our pursuit of ambitious goals but also give us an added responsibility to continue making him grow in his sporting career,” adds head coach Carlos Gonzalez, who enjoyed a coach of the year nomination following Tabla’s first season.

Now back for another season at TD Place, the high-profile addition returns with the weight of higher expectation on his shoulders. It’s also a tidy piece of business for Ottawa, who had signed him to a three-year deal, sold him, and then signed him to a new three-year deal one season later.

Atletico Ottawa has also teased that the club will announce the signing of a local player next Tuesday.

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