Welcome to CPL50, a series where we’ll reveal the top 50 players from the 2021 Canadian Premier League regular season, as voted on by a panel of coaches from all eight teams and media from OneSoccer and CanPL.ca. For more information on the voting process and method, click here.
Slotting in at seventh in the CPL50 is a newcomer to the league this past year, in Cavalry FC centre-back Daan Klomp. The young Dutchman was a revelation for Tommy Wheeldon Jr.'s club in 2021, fitting into the side immediately and establishing himself as one of the most capable and impressive central defenders in the CPL. His vast experience and talent with the ball made him a very calming presence at the back for Cavalry, and his mobility and crisp passing allowed the Cavs to play out of the back very smoothly all year. Klomp was named to the Gatorade Team of the Week seven times in 2021 -- most in the league, tied with his usual centre-back partner Karifa Yao -- and he was Player of the Week twice. He proved himself to be extremely reliable, keeping the Cavs' backline extremely well-organized and controlled. Klomp's stability at the back allowed Cavalry's wide players, like Mo Farsi or Jose Escalante, more freedom to join the attack, knowing the defender can cover ground and keep things secure so well. He ultimately played 24 CPL games for Cavalry, and he scored three goals as well by getting to good areas on set-pieces. Klomp came to the CPL in 2021 with a wealth of footballing experience, having spent most of his career prior with Dutch club NAC Breda. After graduating from their academy, he played nine times for their first team in the Eredivisie, including twice against European giants Ajax. The 23-year-old also played significant minutes in the Dutch second tier on several loan stints, meaning he'd built up quite the resumé before arriving in Calgary, where he has thrived so far in the CPL.
The rest of the CPL50 countdown is available here. Five more players will be revealed per day until December 22.