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The number of Canadians playing first team football in Europe seems to be at a low, coinciding with the national team's well-documented struggles.

In the same week that Canada sank to a lowly 106th place in FIFA's world rankings, it became painfully apparent that a big reason for this is the dearth of Canadians playing at high levels around the world.

Compared to just a few years again, Canucks are seeing precious little time on the pitch at home and abroad. The few who are lucky enough to earn a living overseas are battling for first team football at almost every level.

Hume starts in big PNE victory

One of the flag bearers for Canadians in England over the past decade, Iain Hume is currently plying his trade with Preston North End in League One.

Considered a big promotion candidate heading into the season, PNE certainly looked the part on Saturday when it cruised to a 3-0 victory over Stevenage. Hume started and played 77 minutes in the win, which moved Preston up to fifth on the table after seven rounds of play.

Haber starts Notts County loan

Another Canadian making a go of it in England's third tier is Marcus Haber, the big striker who recently joined Notts County on loan from Stevenage.

Haber played his first match for Notts County over the weekend, going 90 minutes in a 3-1 loss at MK Dons. It's going to be a tough slog for Haber and Co., as Notts County is dead last with just one point so far.

Edgar does not participate in Burnley draw

Up a level in England's Championship, David Edgar sat on the bench and watched as his club Burnley played to a 1-1 stalemate with visiting Blackburn Rovers on Saturday.

The versatile defender has started this season as his did last: on the outside looking in. Canadian fans will be hoping that Edgar can force his way into the starting XI as he did during the last campaign.

Jackson benched as Braunschweig earns first point

Over in Germany, Simeon Jackson was relegated to the sidelines as Eintracht Braunschweig scored its first goal and claimed its first point of the young season in a 1-1 draw with FC Nurnberg.

The offensively challenged Braunschweig side sits at the bottom of the Bundesliga and will need to start scoring more goals soon if it plans on staying in Germany's top flight.

De Jong looks on for Augsburg victory

Another Canadian riding the pine this weekend was Marcel de Jong.

The left-sided player watched from the bench as FC Augsburg maintained its impressive early season form in the Bundesliga with a 2-1 win over Freiburg.

Augsburg has plodded along near the bottom of the table for the past couple of seasons, but after five games this season it sits in sixth place (just three points back of third). Time will tell whether the club can maintain its relatively lofty position in the standings, and whether de Jong can regain his place as a regular starter.

Friend, Hainault onlookers during 2. Bundesliga deadlock

Things weren't much better for Canadians in the German second division, with Rob Friend's 1860 Munich drawing André Hainault's VfR Aalen on Friday.

Neither Canadian got off the bench in the match, which is especially puzzling in Hainault's case as the 27-year-old was brought in as a 'high-profile' international signing for Aalen.

Occean goes 80 minutes in FCK loss

The situation was a bit better for Olivier Occean, who started and played 80 minutes for FC Kaiserslautern on Saturday.

Occean is on loan to the 2. Bundesliga side, which dropped the match 1-0 to host Sandhausen.

De Guzman, Xanthi pummeled in Greece

Meanwhile in the Greek Super League, midfielder Julian de Guzman had a rough day at the office as he played 90 minutes for SKODA Xanthi in a 4-0 loss at Olympiakos Piraeus.

De Guzman has played every minute of Xanthi so far, with the club claiming four points from the first four games of the season.

Borjan backstops Sivasspor victory

Over in nearby Turkey, goalkeeper Milan Borjan started a wild back-and-forth affair between his club Sivasspor and visiting Eskişehirspor. The match ended in a 3-2 victory for Sivasspor, which allowed Borjan's side to leapfrog its opponent into ninth place on the Super Lig table.

Hutchinson goes 90 in Beşiktaş rout

Similar to Borjan at Sivasspor, midfielder Atiba Hutchinson is also an automatic starter for his club.

The 30-year-old slotted into the middle of the park for Beşiktaş in a 3-0 win at Bursaspor, keeping the club perfect through four rounds of play.

Stamatopoulos earns clean sheet for AIK

At the northern end of the continent, Kenny Stamatopoulous was in goal as fourth place AIK fought to a scoreless draw with visiting Kalmar in Sweden's Allsvenskan.

Stamatopoulos has made 18 starts for AIK, which sits just two points from a Europa League berth after 23 matches played.

Hirschfeld plays backup for Vålerenga

In nearby Norway, Lars Hirschfeld continued his new role as backup goalkeeper, remaining on the bench for Vålerenga in a 4-3 win over Brann on Sunday.

The 34-year-old Hirschfeld has only made one league appearance this season, spending the rest of the time backing up starter Gudmund Kongshavn.

Cavallini a late sub for Nacional

Across the pond in South America, young striker Lucas Cavallini came off the bench in the 78th minute for 10-man Nacional in a futile effort to erase a two-goal deficit to host Danubio. The home side ultimately prevailed 2-0, with Cavallini finding the back of the net but having his goal called off due to a foul committed elsewhere on the pitch during the play.

The 20-year-old has made two appearances for Nacional in the Uruguayan Primera Division in 2013-14, after he elected to fight for a place with the club rather than go out on loan as he did last season.

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