Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
MLS's 'first son' to boost Wizards
by Mike Woitalla, January 27th, 2010 7AM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily



Is young Teal Bunbury, who is set to become the first son of a former MLS player to play in the league, the cure for the Kansas City Wizards' anemic offense? Quite likely if he continues following the footsteps of his father, Alex, who says Teal is even more of a natural goalscorer.

"Ever since I was young and watching my dad I always wanted to be a professional soccer player -- especially as I got older and I realized how much I loved the game," says Teal Bunbury, who left Akron after his sophomore season.

Alex Bunbury immigrated to Canada from his native Guyana. He scored 16 goals in 64 appearances for the Canadian national team and is in the Canadian Soccer Hall of Fame. Teal was born in Canada and played for its youth national teams, but he spent most of his 19 years in Europe and the United States.

Teal first saw his father play when Alex joined England's West Ham, but his first memories are from Portugal, where Alex spent his prime years as a leading scorer for Maritimo. He scored 59 goals in 165 games during his six seasons. Teal was 6 when the family moved to the Madeira Islands. He went to his father's practices and got to hang out in the locker room.

"I remember thinking, 'OK, this is what I want to do,'" said Teal, whom the Wizards picked No. 4 overall in the 2010 SuperDraft.

The six years Teal spent in Portugal had a profound impact on his development. He joined Maritimo's youth program at age 6 and recalls the experience as "amazing." But that was just part of it.

"I went to a private school and me and my buddies would always try to find a place to play after school, like parking garages or parking lots, dirt fields, anywhere we could," Teal says. "That was our life. It's the culture over there."

Alex, who started his pro career in the Canadian Soccer League, finished in MLS playing for the Kansas City Wizards in 1999-2000 before retiring at age 33. The family then settled in Minnesota, from where Teal's mother, Kristi, hailed.

"My dad started coaching me when I was in fourth grade," Teal said. "He had a huge impact and influence on me. It was tough sometimes. He pushed me a lot. At times I didn't like it and cried to my mom, 'Dad's being too hard on me.' But it was definitely worth it.

"He knew what he was talking about, so I would listen and try to do my best."

Teal Bunbury, Soccer America's 2009 Collegiate Player of the Year, also won the Hermann Trophy last year, becoming only the third sophomore to win the trophy that dates back to 1967. He'll turn 20 before the MLS season, when the Wizards will try to rebuild an offense that mustered a measly 33 goals in 30 games last season.

"I'm honored that the Kansas City Wizards are giving me an opportunity," said Teal, who has dual U.S. and Canadian citizenship. "There are high expectations. I'm up for the challenge."

No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now



Recent Soccer America Daily
MLS Countdown: Pending Barnetta exit adds incentive for Union    
Of the 12 playoff qualifiers, Philadelphia compiled the fewest points (42) and drew a daunting match ...
What They're Saying: Sacramento planning and design commissioner Cornelious Burke    
"This project in my opinion is a game changer." -- Sacramento planning and design commissioner Cornelious ...
USL Expansion: Tampa Bay and Ottaea leave NASL    
As the USL and MLS grow, the NASL shrinks. From its membership of 12 teams for ...
MLS Moves: Jahn's goals net him new contract in Columbus    
A rough season for Crew SC did yield some hope for the future, and as part ...
MLS Playoffs: Teams limp into Knockout Round    
Between them, the LA Galaxy and Real Salt Lake have made 11 MLS Cup appearances and ...
Video Pick: Carlos Alberto's wonder goal    
Carlos Alberto, who died at age 72 on Tuesday, scored one of the greatest World Cup ...
Video Pick: Sweet solo strike from Leipzig    
One of the reasons newly promoted RB Leipzig is only two points behind Bundesliga leader Bayern ...
U.S. Abroad: Big night for Americans in DFB Pokal    
Bobby Wood scored two goals for Hamburg, his first since the second week of the Bundesliga ...
Double DUII arrests add to Portland nightmare week    
In the space of a week, the Portland Timbers, the 2015 MLS champions, failed to reach ...
Newcomers debut for U.S. U-17s boys in pair of wins    
In their first games since Coach John Hackworth named the 32-player roster for the fall semester ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives