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Woodbridge's Joseph Jackson Signs With Ireland's Drogheda United FC

By League1 Ontario staff, 03/13/16, 3:15PM EDT


Woodbridge Strikers' Joseph Jackson has signed a contract with League of Ireland First Division side Drogheda United FC. Drogheda competes in the second tier of the League of Ireland. 

Jackson, who played both striker and centre-back with Woodbridge Strikers - the 2015 L1 Cup champions and league runners-up - has been signed by the Irish side to play primarily in central defence. 

"He went for a trial and impressed," said Woodbridge head coach, Peter Pinizzotto. 

"He's a big guy, 6' 4", and they are using him as a centre-back whereas we primarily used him as a centre-forward," he added. 

"They need big players in that position in that league. I was not surprised he signed in Ireland where they play an aerial and very physical game."

A native of Vaughan, Ontario, Jackson is an alumni (2010-2013) of the West Virginia Tech program that won two back-to-back national titles in United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA). He also played in the Premier Development League (PDL) for Southern West Virginia's King's Warriors (2013). 

"We just had him for one year after finishing school," continued Pinizzotto. 

"For us, he was able to create a lot of space due to his size, and attracted attention of defenders," he added. "He was a great target guy and did well with his back to the net, creating chances for his teammates. His size really helped but, for his size, he moved very well also."

As Pinizzotto explains, Jackson's signing with a European pro club is in line with the goal of the Woodbridge Strikers League1 program. 

"On the men's side, this is what we use League1 for primarily - to keep players training at a professional standard and frequency so they can prepare for upcoming trials, or return to the professional ranks," he said. 

"Our program is also good for highly-talented 18 year olds etc., but we are mainly focused on players that are breaking into, or returning, to the pro ranks," Pinizzotto concluded. 

"However, as we are successful in placing players, we always need to find new ones and rebuild!"