In a new profile on MLSsoccer.com, writer Charles Boehm tells more of the story of Portland Timbers forward Fanendo Adi, who currently sits on the doorstep of breaking the club's all-time goal-scoring record. Currently sitting at 45 goals, Adi needs only one more to pass NASL-era legend John Bain and will get his first opportunity on Sunday as the Timbers host the New England Revolution at Providence Park (6pm PT, ESPN2).
Boehm's profile starts with Adi's first encounter with Portland back in 2014 when Timbers general manager and president of soccer Gavin Wilkinson visited with the striker in Denmark. Boehm also talks with Bain about Adi's accomplishments, Adi himself about his early experiences in Slovakia and later development in Portland and Timbers head coach Caleb Porter.
The Nigerian native believes much of his success comes from a love of the game started while playing on the streets in Benue.
“Nigerians are a little bit like Brazilians – we play street football a lot. In street football you just learn from nature because there’s nobody coaching you, so you do crazy things with the ball,” he said. “You use your imagination.”
Though still in only his fourth season with Portland, Porter believes Adi is well on his way to becoming one of the most memorable players in club history–beyond just his goal-scoring record.
“It’s a great milestone for the club, certainly for him,” Porter told MLSsoccer.com. “He still has a lot of years to bag goals here and hopefully win trophies for our club. But at the end of the day, he’ll go down as one of the best players that has worn the uniform.”