Begovic, Schmidt win Canadian U-20 soccer awards

Posted: January 14, 2008

Goalkeeper Asmir Begovic of Edmonton and midfielder Sophie Schmidt of Abbotsford, B.C., were named Canada's under-20 soccer players of the year on Monday.

Begovic was in goal for Canada in all three of its games at last summer's FIFA U-20 World Cup. He also was called up to the men's senior squad for a camp in Reykjavik, Iceland.

At the club level, Begovic joined the Portsmouth reserve team for the 2007-08 season, and was on the bench as the backup goalkeeper with the first team in a Premiership match in October.


Schmidt spent the 2007 season playing with the women's senior side, although she's still eligible to play in the FIFA U-20 women's World Cup in Chile this year.

The midfielder played in all three of Canada's games at the women's World Cup in China, scoring one goal.

Schmidt played in 12 games for the Vancouver Whitecaps of the W-League, and helped the University of Portland reach the NCAA Division I quarter-finals.

The awards were determined in a vote by national team coaches (50 per cent), and Canadian certified A- and B-level coaches (50 per cent).

Olivier Lacoste-Lebuis and Monica Lam-Feist were named Canada's under-17 players of the year Sunday.

The Canadian Soccer Association on Tuesday will announce the Canadian female player of the year. The name of the male winner will be released Thursday.