Nathan Mavila Returns To CPL With Pacific FC
Pacific FC has made its recruitment of English full-back Nathan Mavila official.
The move was leaked last week by John Molinaro, who stated that the deal for the Englishman had already been wrapped up behind the scenes. Mavila had been a key addition for the inaugural Cavalry FC roster, making 41 appearances and contributing three goals during his two years with the Alberta-based side.
The 26-year-old returns to the Canadian circuit after splitting his time between Sweden and England last season, where he most recently played non-league football for Wingate and Finchley.
“Nathan brings good experience and character to our team,” said PFC head coach James Merriman, “he is a confident player, has good ability on the ball, and compliments how we want to play.”
Mavila had spent his entire career in England prior to his move to Canada in 2019, developing with Wycombe Wanderers and West Ham United prior to a series of loan spells and transfers in the English lower leagues. His move to Cavalry FC saw him establish himself as a league-leading left-back in the Canadian Premier League’s inaugural campaign.
He departed from the club shortly after The Island Games, joining his former West Ham Academy teammate Moses Makasi at Swedish second division side IK Brage on a two-year deal. His time in Sweden would prove shorter than that, however, with Mavila departing after just six appearances in 2021.
The left-back most recently played for non-league side Wingate and Finchley, where he’d previously played back in 2017. Now, however, comes a return to the pro game.
“It’s been a tough but fun nine months away from the full-time game,” said Mavila, “but I’m back, hungrier than ever and bakc in one of my favourite countries doing what I love with the reigning Canadian Premier League champions.”
Atletico Ottawa’s Vashon Neufville recently made the opposite move, departing the CPL for non-league football with Walton Casuals FC.
Mavila will now compete for a starting spot against Jordan Haynes, whom he muscled out of the inaugural Cavalry FC roster back in 2019. The club’s defensive options have been some shuffling after both Kadin Chung and Lukas MacNaughton were recruited by Toronto FC, with the club adding centre-back Amer Didic in the time since.
Mavila becomes the fourth new player signing of the defending champions, who announced the signings of Abdul Binate, Djenairo Daniels, and the aforementioned Didic earlier this year. Newly-minted head coach James Merriman has already begun preseason preparations with the club, who will defend their North Star Shield against last year’s runners-up on Sunday, April 10.
Both York United and Valour FC are expected to undergo preseason trips to the island ahead of the CPL’s fourth season.
Given that Pacific will simultaneously be competing in the Canadian Championship and the Concacaf League this year, it’s going to need all the depth it can get. The Tridents now have 17 players on the roster ahead of its fourth-ever campaign, and is expected to take Kamron Habibullah on loan from the Whitecaps – though this hasn’t been made official as of yet.
The club did not disclose length or financial details of Mavila’s contract.