League1 Ontario Youngster Xander Race Signs In Germany
A teenager from the League1 Ontario reserve division has signed with a club within the German lower tiers.
Toronto Skillz FC confirmed that Xander Race has put pen to paper on a contract with German fifth division club FK Pirmasens, who are still fighting to bounce back into the fourth division after dropping down from it in 2021.
Race will begin his first playing stint abroad with the club’s U-19 team.
The Canadian teen has been a member of the Toronto Skillz FC Academy since he was nine years old. While the club didn’t field a senior side in League1 Ontario premier division last year, it did field a U-21 team in the reserve division. Race made eleven appearances for that team, accumulating 709 minutes of game time before his move to Germany.
“Jake [Doodnath] from Toronto Skillz FC made me aware of this young man when putting together the roster for a League1 Ontario showcase,” reflected Anthony Totera. “I decided to go see him for myself and I knew right away Jake was spot on – I’m absolutely convinced this young man can play for Canada one day.”
Race had previously embarked on training opportunities abroad before, having participating in a Barcelona-based tournament and a prior stint in Germany – though this summer will mark his first time abroad whilst contracted to a foreign club.
The teenager isn’t the first League1 Ontario reserve to earn a move to Europe this offseason, with Canada U-17 international Erik Pop signing with Karlsruher SC in Germany whilst Kabir Chahal landed with Scottish Championship side Kilmarnock.
Toronto Skillz FC transferred its League1 Ontario league license to Electric City in 2021, formally withdrawing from the league after competing in five seasons since 2016. The club had focused heavily on handing youth players minutes in the pro-am league, but felt for the time being it was best to transfer its license for now and, perhaps sometime down the line, potentially come back into fold as a new team in the expanded multi-division format.
The Scarborough-based club has a history of giving youth players an opportunity to test themselves in the German lower levels, and also helped Guyanese international and former York United midfielder Javier George develop in the team’s early days.