Brazilian attacking midfielder Oliver Minatel will return to Cavalry FC for the 2021 Canadian Premier League season for a third year with the club.
Minatel suffered a fractured tibia and fibula while playing against York9 FC (now York United) at the 2020 CPL Island Games and has undergone surgery and months of training during the off-season. But he has been cleared by medical staff to return to training.
“I am very excited for the 2021 season and thankful for Cavalry FC owners, coaching staff, medical staff, players, and fans for standing by my side and helping me through my recovery,” said Minatel via club statement Thursday. “I can’t wait to play in front of our fans at ATCO Field and give back all the positive energy I received since my injury.”
In two season with Cavalry FC, Minatel has made 36 appearances in all competitions, scoring eight goals in his first season, but none in his second. But Cavs coach Tommy Wheeldon Jr. is hoping the 28-year-old will find his scoring boots in 2021.
“We are delighted to see the return of Oliver to our team for the 2021 roster,” said Wheeldon Jr. via the club statement. “He has shown the strength of character to persevere through a tough injury rehabilitation process and looks to have come back stronger.
“It’s clear that Oliver wanted to be back with us through the work he’s put in and we are a much better team with him in the squad. Not only does he provide a goal threat for us, but he is also a terrific professional and great around the locker room.”
The Canadian Premier League is yet to announce the start date for the 2021 season.