Cal Blankendal joins Oakville Blue Devils’ advisory team
Cal Blankendal says he is excited and looking forward to serving as an adviser for Canadian semi-professional club Oakville Blue Devils FC.
The former Bermuda Football Association vice-president has been tasked in his new role with strengthening ties between the island, the BFA and its respective member clubs and the Blue Devils, who play in League 1 Ontario.
Blankendal is grateful for the opportunity, which he hopes will create more chances for the Blue Devils teams to experience and play in Bermuda, while also providing opportunities for Bermudian players, coaches and administrators to broaden their horizons in Canada.
“First of all, I want to thank the Oakville Blue Devils and executive board for allowing me to join them as an adviser and specifically, being a representative in the region and also for Bermuda,” Blankendal told The Royal Gazette.
“It’s really based on having access to someone on the ground familiar with the culture and the talent pool available and hopefully getting some young people, whether they’re administrators, coaches and players, to interact with the Blue Devils to continue to improve football in Bermuda and vice versa, to find talent for them since they are a semi-professional club, which is trying to become a full fledge professional club sometime in the near future.”
Blankendal, the Bermuda Cricket Board executive director, has worked closely with the club in previous years.
He spearheaded the Blue Devils first team’s tour to the island in 2018, when they participated in and won the Bermuda Triangle Cup and also played in an exhibition match against the national team at the Flora Duffy National Stadium.
Before this, Blankendal also played an integral role along with Brett Mosen, the Blue Devils technical director, in forging a partnership between Western Stars Sports Club, under whose auspices Dandy Town fall, and their Canadian counterparts.
“I’ve known Brett Mosen for about 12 years now so this is not something that’s instant,” he added. “I’ve worked with him through Jon Beard many, many years ago when I was looking for someone to enhance youth football in Bermuda. So these relationships are built on long term commitment and trust and after awhile, people see there is value in working together, and that’s what happens.”
Blankendal is also a former Western Stars Sports Club president, who holds Uefa B and Uefa C coaching badges.