STOCKED Chats with Cavalry FC's Number Nine, Jordan Brown

The soccer star talks football, fashion and settling into life in Canada

As the temperature in Calgary starts to rise, the same can be said for Canadian Premiership Soccer. With Cavalry FC maintaining the longest unbeaten run in the first ever Canadian Premier League, we decided to catch up with their forward; the one and only number nine - Jordan Brown.

We caught Brown on a good day; Cavalry FC had just smashed through their game against local rivals Edmonton with a glorious 3-0 win. Previously playing for West Ham and Arsenal Academies, Brown jumped across the pond to play for Hanover 96, before joining Czech club Znojmo and finally signing for Cavalry FC.  We asked him a few questions and we got some interesting answers.

Photo courtesy of Jordan Brown

We’ve managed to catch you on a rare day off; what would you typically do on days like these?

As the weather’s not so good today; I’m just chilling out. We’re in the thick of the season so I tend to spend days like this relaxing and recharging my batteries; seeing my family, taking walks and watching videos on YouTube. Anything I can’t get done in the week whilst training, I get done on these days. There are loads of places I want to visit whilst living here which I haven’t managed yet, so I’m trying to get around to visiting them all.  I live by one of the lakes but still haven’t been able to go and see yet. I’ve heard it’s a great day out when the weather’s nice, so I’ll probably look at going down there soon. I’ll need a pass to gain entrance as it’s pretty exclusive around there and gated off to the general public. I don’t live in that part, but hopefully one day I will!

How have you found fitting in to the Canadian lifestyle?

There’re a few culture differences, but you tend to find that there isn’t much difference in English speaking Western countries. I grew up in London, so the only way I can describe Calgary is like the Midlands or North of England. There’s a lot of greenery, less buildings, and more road and country. Because of where I’m from, this is all new to me. Obviously, I’ve lived in other cities, but nothing compared to this. Everyone is so friendly and very community-centred which is something I love. In London, you could walk down the road and pass numerous people without saying hello. That doesn’t happen here! Even small things like working on your front garden is expected in Calgary; I’ve not known that before. I like all those little things that define this city. It can’t be compared to London; the only other cities you could compare to there are the likes of Toronto and New York. I suppose how quickly you fit in depends on where you’ve come from, but I’m liking this way of life.

How are you finding football over in Canada?

On the pitch, it’s quite similar to what I’m used to. There are so many good players! We’ve got a lot of young players who are building their name, but we’ve also got a lot of who have big profiles too. I’m really surprised at the standard of soccer here; it’s way better than I ever expected. I’ve been in situations where I’ve been disappointed regarding play, so I’m just happy it was something I never expected. I’m somewhere I wouldn’t mind staying.

Photo courtesy of Jordan Brown

Are you with Cavalry FC long-term?

I’m here for one or two years depending on how things go. That’s enough time for me to show my development, do what I need to do and see what happens from there. I could definitely stay here for a few years; I’m seeing where it takes me.

Have you always wanted to play football or did it happen out of chance?

It’s all I knew really; my older brother played soccer even before I was born, so in turn it felt like I was ‘born into it’. I was never pushed to pursue the career; it just happened naturally. I’ve always wanted to play soccer; willing to learn and improve, so naturally, I just got better and better. From there, it became more fun, and it’s just become a dream. It’s something I want to set my goals towards and achieve big things. I’m 100% privileged.

Photo courtesy of Jordan Brown

How did you find playing for West Ham?

It’s a prideful club with a lot of history, especially regarding fans and key players within English football. There were high expectations there; the fans always backed you.

Is the support for soccer in Canada different to elsewhere you’ve played?

The fans aren’t as intense as in England or Germany really; I think hockey here has the same kind of support as England and Germany has for soccer. Maybe at a higher level of soccer playing it’s different; I’ve not really seen the Canadian MLS teams play yet so I’m just talking about what I’ve seen so far.

The cultures are so different. Everything in Canada appears to be based on society; how people live their day-to-day lives is how they behave at soccer games, which isn’t the case for English and German fans. When you’re playing in front of English and German fans; it doesn’t take much to rile them up. We played at home to Pacific FC not too long back and one of my teammates scored a goal; I was cheering to the away fans going ‘COME ONNN, COME ONNN!’ It must have taken three or four goes celebrating like that in front of them to get to get a reaction back which was mainly booing and telling me ‘You suck!’ It was almost like pantomime in a way; it’s definitely not the same as the response you get back in England and Germany.

Whilst there’s good banter at English soccer games, it can get a bit vulgar. If I was to do the same as I’ve just said in England, the fans would slaughter me and get really abusive. I’d probably get things thrown at me and people trying to come onto the pitch and attack me, but there’s good and bad sides of English supporters.

You could say there’s good and bad support here as well I guess; I would say that that the fans here are much politer, more formal, and they keep themselves grounded and disciplined. The only issue is the crowd isn’t as much fun as they would be in England or Germany. Saying that, our fans are brilliant; they’re loud, they sing and shout, and they’ve got good chants!

Photo courtesy Jordan Brown
Photo courtesy of Jordan Brown

What soccer boots are your favourites?

All-time favourites? They’d have to be the R9 Vapors. They were Ronaldo Luís Nazário de Lima’s (Brazilian Ronaldo’s) boots – the yellow ones. They were customised to fit his foot and had a little flap at the front; yeah, those are probably my all-time favourites.

I’ve always loved Nike. I used to be associated with them and grew up wearing Nike soccer b oots, so naturally, they’re my go-to. I always wanted to wear Nike as my favourite players wore their boots. Luckily, they just fit me as a person. As I’ve got older, I’ve grown to appreciate other brands and try them out as well; for example, Puma and Adidas. As long as I’ve got a good fit, they’re light on my feet and have a little protection, then they’re the boots I like. Right now, I’m wearing some Orange/White Nike Mercurials and I enjoy them. They give me no problems and I’d easily say they’re my most favourite boots I’ve worn.

 What do you think of UK fashion?

That it’s changed throughout the years. It really depends on what generation you’re from or what era of clothing you like to wear, but typically, every city has its own style. Manchester, for example, is known for its mod-ish vibes with Parka jackets, Fred Perry looks and polo shirts.

When I was growing up, I remember there was ever-changing fashion then. There was an American wave going on; everyone wanted to dress like a skater-type of guy. Checked shirts and chino trousers were in fashion too. Vans were also really popular. In my teenage years, it was more about the designer names and big flashy labels. Now, I tend to veer toward subtlety; clothes that you can’t really tell the brand of. As long as it’s clean and looks nice, I’m happy. UK fashion really depends on where about in the UK you’re from.
Photo courtesy of Jordan Brown

What about Canadian fashion?

It’s different! Over here, they dress a bit more formal. I’ve seen people go to clubs and they dress in proper dress shoes accompanied by jeans. I know that the majority of guys in the UK, they wouldn’t do that. If UK people wore dress shoes, it would usually be with a suit or something similar. Over here, there are a lot more shirts, sweaters & dress pants. Canadians like to impress when they go out, they have a much different style. 

Who’s your favourite footballer?

I’ve had a lot throughout the years; growing up, Brazilian Ronaldo and Christiano Ronaldo (I’m actually a Manchester United fan) and Wayne Rooney; those were my favourite players growing up. I’d say in recent years; I like to watch Karim Benzema from Real Madrid – I like the style of play he’s got. He’s not necessarily all about the goals but he’s about helping the team in other ways like creating opportunities for other players to score. He’s very under-rated.

What was the last item of clothing you bought?

It was a jacket from Nike- the Air Jordan range. Old school and retro but almost re-invented in black and white. I bought it mainly because it’s got my name on it, but I really like the Air Jordan range.

What’s the most expensive item of clothing you’ve ever bought?

Surprisingly, not as expensive as you’d think! People associate footballers with spending loads of money on clothes, but I wouldn’t necessarily spend over $850 on something. If I did spend that much, it would have to be something that lasts, and I can wear for a long time whilst still looking good. I have shoes that are worth over $850, but I never bought them for that price. I’m a bit of a bargain hunter. I’ve got a pair of Giuseppe Zanotti’s; when they came out, they were worth $1100, but I never bought them for that price - I got them for $600. The one item that sticks out in my mind is a leather jacket I bought from All Saints; that was around $760. I still wear it to this day for nice occasions. It’s something that I’d never dislike or stop wearing and it’s still in great condition.

Cheers for the interview Jordan!














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