Edem Mortotsi became the latest Edmontionian to sign for FC Edmonton on Thursday.
Mortotsi will be returning to the FC Edmonton set-up after his previous stint with the club which began in 2013. the Academy graduate spent two seasons playing for the Eddies and tallied 15 competitive appearances.
His second stint with FC Edmonton will be much different than his first experience. Mortotsi was apart of the club when they were competition in the North American Soccer League (NASL), but now he will be apart of his hometown club in their new chapter, which is in Canadian Premier League (CPL).
“It feels great to be back with FC Edmonton,” Mortotsi said. “I’m happy I get a second chance to represent my city. It will be nice to compete in a Canadian based league, it’s something we’ve needed in this country for a long time.”
Mortotsi and head coach Jeff Paulus have a strong relationship and the midfielder is excited to work with Paulus again. The pair worked together in the FC Edmonton Academy and at NAIT Ooks where they were crowned national champions.
“Me and Jeff go way back,” Mortotsi added. “I remember he came to my work and he gave me a ride to register for NAIT. That’s how it all started. Then together we won the national championship.
“After NAIT, when Jeff became part of the first team coaching staff, he offered me a trial when Colin Miller was the coach. I signed a contract and I was grateful he helped me take the next step in my career.”
The 25-year-old midfielder always did well in pre-seasons, often finding the net and creating chances for his teammates, but Mortotsi found it hard to find regular minutes under former head coach Colin Miller.
This time around Mortotsi will be looking to be a central figure in Paulus team-selections.
“I want to win a trophy this time around,” Mortotsi said. “We didn’t win anything last time around. I want to be more involved in the squad and I’m coming in with more experience and knowledge and hopefully I will have a chance to express myself more on the pitch.”
Mortotsi’s announcement came on the same day FC Edmonton announced the signings of four other players, including the return of Tomi Ameobi and Kareem Moses, who Mortotsi played with in the past.
In addition, Mortotsi grew up with the likes of Bruno and Allan Zebie, Ajeej Sarkaria, and Ajay Khabra. So the bond between Mortotsi and his teammates is already strong, which will only help the team on the field.
“Allan, Bruno, Ajeej and Ajay, we all came up from the academy together,” Mortotsi said. “I think our chemistry will be the best in the league because a lot of the players have played together, wheather it was as kids or as adults.”