Easton Ongaro is coming home. FC Edmonton announced on Thursday that Ongaro will be back with the club for the 2021 CPL season following the striker’s recent loan spell with Vendsyssel FF. Ongaro, a 22-year-old native of Edmonton, had been on loan with Vendsyssel in Denmark’s second division since early October, scoring two goals in seven appearances. The Danish club had the option of signing Onagro to a permanent deal once his loan stint was over on Dec. 31, but decided against it, prompting his return to his hometown club. "We didn't make the decision lightly," Ingo Winter, Managing Director of Football for VFF's ownership group, said in a media release.
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"Easton showed his potential especially in December, scoring two goals. He always behaved in an exemplary manner and fought for his spot in the team. However, we have generally decided to rebuild the team after our poor sporting performance in the previous round, so we will change the personnel in the attacking line. We thank Easton for his time here and wish him only the best." Ongaro added: "I would like to thank VFF for the opportunity to get my first experience playing in Europe, but now it is time to shift focus to an important 2021 season with FC Edmonton. I am happy to be back home and I am looking forward to getting back with the squad. We have a lot to prove as a club, and I know everyone here is ready for the challenge.” Selected 15th overall by Calvary FC in the 2018 CPL-U SPORTS Draft, Ongaro ended up signing with FC Edmonton the following year. In two seasons with his hometown club, Ongaro has scored a league-high 13 goals (tied with Akeem Garcia and Tristan Borges) in 29 appearances in all competitions, including three at The Island Games in 2020. He also scored 10 goals in 16 matches during the 2019 campaign. New FC Edmonton coach Alan Koch was impressed with Ongaro’s showing in Denmark, and hopes the youngster can build upon that during the 2021 CPL season. “Easton has grown significantly through his time in the CPL and has also been able to develop further through his first professional experience in Europe,” Koch said. “I look forward to working with him and seeing how far we can take his game. He scores goals, and so we are really excited to start working with him and all his teammates to help set us up for success in the final third. Ongaro was ranked eighth in CanPL.ca’s recent “Top 23 Under 23 in the CPL” list. Ongaro is the eighth FC Edmonton player confirmed for the 2021 CPL season, joining fellow returnees Jeannot Esua, Marcus Velado-Tsegaye, Chance Carter, and Antony Caceres, and newcomers Fraser Aird, Kyle Porter and Paris Gee.