April 15, 2024
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University of Calgary William Omoreniye

Former Cavalry Draft Pick Omoreniye Set For New Zealand Test

By on March 21, 2024 0 940 Views

After earning a draft selection from the regular season Canadian Premier League champions last year, William Omoreniye is still chasing his dream of professional football.

The 20-year-old left back has embarked on a cross-world journey that takes him far from hometown Calgary, with the youngster now set to test himself in New Zealand’s football circles in a full-time training environment.

The move comes after the the University of Calgary standout prospected himself with Cavalry last season, though he only rode the bench prior to his release. The team ultimately signing its other draft pick Eryk Kobza to a multi-year deal instead.

Former FC Edmonton head coach Alan Koch sees potential in the Calgarian talent, however.

Koch is still leading the way at New Zealand side Western Suburbs FC while holding the technical director poster at the Ole Football Academy, a position he’d held since FC Edmonton folded at the tail end of 2022. Known for giving opportunity to young Canadians while with the Eddies, he’s continued the mantra betwixt a new focus on Kiwi talent, with several Canadians helping the Wellington-based team last year.

There’s more of that on the menu for this year, with William being the latest recruit to come in from Canada.

“We have several young Kiwi players that aspire to get into the U-20 teams to go to the next World Cup, and we’re optimistic we can do similar things for William – help him showcase himself to various Canadian groups, but also get him into professional football,” says Koch on the youngster.

Koch has done a remarkable job with Western Suburbs since his arrival last season, taking in a group that had finished dead last prior to his arrival and leading them to a fifth-place finish in year one. He believes Omoreniye can play a role in the club’s continual rise up the rankings in New Zealand.

“We’re excited to have him with us. He’s a very dynamic, skillful player who has a great appetite to learn, grow, and get better. We’re excited to have him in our group,” adds Koch.

Omoreniye isn’t the only Canadian to travel for Koch’s tutelage this year, with longtime Forge prospect Miles Green and former Electric City midfielder Connor Wilson also joining, while Guyana international and former CPL champion Quillan Roberts has returned for a second season with Western Suburbs.

Koch believes that the platform at Ole Football Academy is the type of environment Omoreniye and young talents like him can flourish in, particularly with William offering versatility as both a wing back and a midfielder who can play further up the left flank, too.

“They train in a full-time professional environment and get better – our job is to help them achieve their dreams,” adds Alan.

The Calgarian’s first stint in such an environment came after Cavalry selected him with a first round pick last year following some head-turning performances with Cavalry’s U-20 side in the AMSL. A Foothills Academy graduate and an a U SPORTS All-Rookie Team award winner following his first year with the Dinos, his roots in Calgary’s footballing scene run deep.

To get upwards, however, sometimes one has to branch out – and that’s exactly what the 20-year-old has on the menu for 2024.

Header Image Photo Credit: University of Calgary

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