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1. Player of the Year Lapira to try out in Scotland
by Paul Kennedy, April 20th, 2007 5:22PM



Notre Dame's Joseph Lapira, the 2006 Soccer America Men's Player of the Year and Hermann Trophy winner, will head to Scotland on the eve of 2007 college season for a tryout at Premier League club Aberdeen.

According to Aberdeen youth director Len Taylor, Lapira will arrive Aug. 5 and spend a week with the Dons. He was recommended by Notre Dame coach Bobby Clark, a former Aberdeen and Scotland goalie.

Lapira, a rising senior, played the 2006 season with a meniscus tear in his knee -- an injury suffered in Notre Dame's opening game against UAB -- but that didn't stop him from having a breakout season. He led the country in scoring with 22 goals and 50 points

What makes Lapira particularly attractive is that he is eligible for a work permit.

"He graduates at Christmas time," Taylor told the Aberdeen Evening Press, "so if we sign him it would be at the end of the year. I believe his mother is a British or Irish citizen, so he will definitely have no problems playing here."

Taylor also said the Dons might look at two other Irish players, both rising juniors: keeper Andrew Quinn and left back Jack Traynor, both of whom would qualify for a British passport and overcome work permit problems.

Winger Ian Etherington, son of former U.S. international Gary Etherington, tried out unsuccessfully at Aberdeen in January 2007 after completing his final year at Notre Dame. Irish star Greg Dalby is currently on trial at Scottish leader Celtic.

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