Jonathan De Guzmán: The Deal

4 Sep

Photo: Getty Images via independent.co.uk

With the Canadian national team in action against Peru today, it seems like a good time to talk about the Jonathan De Guzmán (Mallorca).  As I mentioned earlier, Jonathan is originally from Toronto, and he is the little brother of Toronto FC and Canadian national team midfielder (and former La Liga player) Julian De Guzmán. But Jonathan decided to make himself available for the Dutch national team in 2008, after gaining citizenship. Disappointing for Canada? Of course. Frankly, we need all the help we can get, and De Guzmán is a talented player. But I understand his reasons, and certainly don’t consider him a traitor.

Jonathan went to the Netherlands at the age of 12 to join the Feyenoord youth academy, and was with the club up until his transfer to RCD Mallorca this summer. He lived in the Netherlands for ten years, and would consider it home every bit as much as Canada. Of course, the Dutch national team is much more glamorous, and Canada is not likely to make it to the World Cup over the course of De Guzmán’s career. (But we can – and should – hope.) He has been called up to the U-21 and U-23 squads for the Netherlands, as well as playing in the 2008 Olympics. But he has never been called up to the senior squad. Due to recent changes in FIFA regulations, this mean he can still change his mind (he still has Canadian citizenship, having lived in the Netherlands for five years before he turned 18). Will he? Not likely, but we can always hope. Until he makes the Dutch senior squad, that is.

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