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Brampton Guardian: Bent Back in Game

Winnipeg Fury

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A pair of youngsters from the North York Hearts under-10 soccer team work on their speed during a session at King's Cross Physiotherapy.

Soccer's Bent back in the game


His playing career is over but Jason Bent is still keeping himself active in soccer.

The former Canadian national team player is keeping himself busy with the sport by offering his expertise to individual players and teams as a coach. He has been training athletes at King's Cross Physiotherapy for several months and also plans to offer clinics during the summer under the name Speed for Soccer.

"I want to give something back,'' said Bent, 29 who was forced to retire two years ago after a serious knee injury.

"I've played at every level of soccer,'' said the midfielder, who was raised in Brampton. He played club soccer in Malton and attended St. Augustine Secondary School.

While there he and another national team player, Paul Stalteri, now playing professionally in England, made a formidable duo for the Falcons and led them to the Ontario Federation of Schools Athletic Association (OFSAA) championship.

After graduating from high school Bent earned a soccer scholarship to the University of Maryland. After one year there he turned professional, playing three years with the Colorado Rapids of Major League Soccer.

He also had three years with Plymouth Argyle in England, helping that team win two titles in three seasons, moving up from the Third Division to the First.

Over the years he had a number of stints with the Canadian national team, starting with the under-17, under-20 and Olympic teams. He played for the World Cup team for six years, earning 32 caps.

However on Nov. 18, 2003, while playing for Canada at a match in Ireland, he injured his right knee.

While it was first thought not to be serious, he underwent daily rehabilitation sessions and two operations, but was still unable to restore the knee to health before being given the bad news by a doctor.

"I was told that I wouldn't be able to play professional soccer again,'' he said.

As a result of his injury he is involved in litigation with the Canadian Soccer Association and its insurers.

Bent said while his injury won't let him play he can still demonstrate soccer skills to youngsters and has been offering clinics at King's Cross since January.

"We work on speed, agility and quickness,'' said Bent of the drills he is able to teach indoors.

For more information on Speed for Soccer, phone Bent at 416-931-8661.

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