Connor James will return to FC Edmonton in 2021 under new coach Alan Koch after the club signed the 24-year-old goalkeeper to a contract through the next Canadian Premier League campaign. James made six starts for the Eddies during the 2020 CPL season, making 11 saves and completing more passes per 90 minutes (20.55) than any other goalkeeper at The Island Games. He also earned a Golden Glove nod in 2019 after recording seven clean sheets across 22 starts for his hometown club. The former University of Alberta Golden Bears standout was selected seventh overall in the inaugural CPL-U SPORTS Draft before making his pro debut in the CPL with the Eddies. "FC Edmonton has played a significant role in my life for many years and I’m extremely excited to be continuing my journey with the club," James said in a media release. "Alan has a great vision for the future of the club, with strong values and clear objectives. I am happy to play a part in the future."
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James finished third among CPL goalkeepers in the 2019 Volkswagen Premier Performer standings with a score of 75.22 – likely due to his staggering 12 "sweeper keepings" on the season (a league-best). "We are looking forward to welcoming Connor back for his third season with the club," coach Alan Koch said in a media release. "He has had good experiences so far in the CPL, and we look forward to taking him to an even higher level this year. His mentality, professionalism, and attitude are major positive influencers on creating the right training environment we need to have for team success." James is the 14th FC Edmonton signing for 2021 and the seventh newcomer from their squad at The Island Games, joining returnees Easton Ongaro, Jeannot Esua, Marcus Velado-Tsegaye, Chance Carter, and Antony Caceres.