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Valentine back on board with Vancouver Whitecaps

Club legend Carl Valentine is back on deck with Vancouver Whitecaps as they prepare to enter MLS next season.

The 52-year old English-born Valentine played for the Whitecaps in the late 1970s through to the mid-1980s before taking the coaching reins in 1994 until 1999 and is now back in a full-time ambassador and staff coach role.

Valentine, who was a star with West Bromwich Albion back in his heyday, admitted that he was constantly asked when he was going to again be involved in soccer in Vancouver and feels he is now back at his rightful home.

"Whenever I'd bump into people it was 'When are you getting back on board with the Whitecaps?'" he told The Province.

"I've been out of the loop for 10 years and it's almost every other day people come up to me," he said. "It's not just being stopped and recognized, they talk with such passion. You feel a genuine connection with people, like a lost friend. It's pretty amazing."

Valentine admitted that the deal offered to him by Whitecaps president Bob Lenarduzzi was good for him and was now keen to really get his hands dirty with the MLS expansion franchise.

"They were able to come up with something and this felt right to me," he added.

"I'm delighted. Hopefully I can be part of bridging that gap [between the club and fans] and make it that 'We' thing again."

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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