French-born Congolese international striker Dominique Malonga joined Cavalry FC in March. He and his new club recently finished training camp in Dominican Republic, along with all other Canadian Premier League teams. Cavalry FC kicks off its season against York9 FC at Spruce Meadows May 4.
Malonga came through the AS Monaco youth system in France. He joined Italian Serie A club Torino in 2007. The 30-year-old moved around Italy from 2008 to 2013 playing for Foggia, Cesena and Vicenza. He’s also played for Murica in Spain, Hibernian in Scotland, Servette in Switzerland and Chania in Greece.
Total Soccer Project’s Stuart Gradon spoke to Malonga at the end of March about is aspirations for Cavalry FC and what he brings to Calgary’s new professional soccer team:
Why did you join Cavalry FC?
“The challenge, it’s a new thing,” said Malonga. “CPL’s a new thing. (It’s) interesting for me. I like a challenge. Tommy is obviously a good guy. We talked face to face. And he (gave) me that fire to be something special. I’m in, I’m in. I’m all in.”
How are you finding the club and Calgary?
“I was surprised by the intensity. I watched a game on replay. We have high intensity. I was surprised about that. The guys are awesome. And the city’s beautiful. I had the pleasure to watch the hockey, the Flames, so it was a fun weekend.”
What do you bring to Cavalry FC?
“I can bring my experience. Experience and my quality. I want to win. So, I will bring everything I can on the pitch to lead these guys by example. We’ll try and bring the championship, because we are here for that.
“I love playing, the combinations. I played in Spain, it’s my style. I like the relationship with the players and passes. I like to score, obviously. But I can play.”
What kind of challenges have you faced in your career?
“When you play growing up, it’s exciting. When you play to stay (in) the division it is challenging also. I have a lot of challenges like this.
“I had the chance to go up with Cesena when I was in Italy. In Italy also, in Serie A we have couple of games to go down, but we stay up. It’s different but it’s a good challenge also.
“I am ready for everything. But I am a winner, so I want to win. So, I will try to bring a lot of victories to Cavalry and I will try to win the championship.”
How has playing in a variety of professional leagues shaped you as a player?
“I can adapt my game. I’ve been to Scotland. Scottish football is fire, you know. Box to box. In Italy, it’s tactics. In Spain you play football, obviously. I can adapt my game.
“I’m ready. I’m confident in myself. We’ll try to win the championship, because it’s all about that.”