The ex-Toronto FC centre back and Canadian international resurfaced on Thursday, this time at a Vancouver Whitecaps practice. The Whitecaps say Attakora wants to play in Europe.BURNABY, B.C. – On Thursday, the Vancouver Whitecaps held an open practice for fans – and they had a surprise guest.
Nana Attakora, the ex-Toronto FC centre back and Canadian international, trained with the first team in front of a few hundred fans at Swangard Stadium, but head coach Martin Rennie was quick to pour cold water on his club potentially signing the 23-year-old.
“He’s doing fine – he’s just here training for a few days,” head coach Martin Rennie told Goal.com. “I think he’s probably going to go and play in Europe, so we’re just letting him train and get fit.”
Attakora has been out of contract since 2011 after failing to agree a deal with the San Jose Earthquakes, but that club still owns his MLS rights. Rennie was quick to point out that fact when pressed on whether his team would be interested in making a move for the player.
“We probably won’t because [San Jose] holds his rights,” Rennie said. “I don’t think it would be possible. I think they want to keep his rights.”
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One player with perhaps a better chance of eventually joining the ‘Caps is fellow Canadian Jacob Lensky, who continues to train in a bid to re-launch his professional soccer career.
The Vancouverite has been training off and on with the Whitecaps since walking away from his contract with Dutch side FC Utrecht around the New Year – the second contract he’s walked away from in his career – and has shown positive signs, according to Rennie.
“We like having him here,” Rennie said. “He’s a good player. He’s just getting back fit and healthy again. Obviously, if he does well he’d be someone we’d be interested in. He’ll play a little bit in the reserve game tomorrow and we’ll help him along the way. I think it’ll take him a while to get back to full fitness, but he’s a good player when he’s at full fitness.”