Born in Portland, Ore., growing up in Vancouver, Wash., Friday's announcement that forward Foster Langsdorf signed with the Portland Timbers as a Homegrown Player was a dream come true for the forward.
“I’m really looking forward to [joining the team] and I honestly can’t believe that this is an opportunity I’m being presented with,” said Langsdorf.
The striker comes to the Timbers following a stellar career at Stanford University that saw him lead the Cardinal to three straight NCAA National Championships (2015, 2016, 2017), two Pac-12 Player of the Year honors (2016, 2017), a 2017 MAC Hermann Trophy semifinalist honor and the Pac-12 career leader in points (86) and goals (37).
Prior to his time at Stanford, Langsdorf was a member of the Timbers Academy from 2012-14, and was named the 2013 Timbers Academy Player of the Year. Additionally, Langsdorf played three seasons (2014-2016) for the Portland Timbers U23s in the PDL. With those deep Timbers roots, donning a kit for the first team is an opportunity that Langsdorf has been working towards for a long time.
Photo by David Blair / Portland Timbers
“I’ve been involved and affiliated with the Timbers since I was a junior in high school,” he said. “I can remember going to the Timbers training facility and just staring at the grass pitch with the rest of my teammates and we were pretty much in awe…just thinking, ‘Wow, those guys get to train [here] every day. And their main job is playing soccer. That’d be pretty cool if I would be fortunate enough to make it and someday get to be able to do the same thing.’”
Langsdorf’s long experience with the Timbers Academy is also one that he feels prepared him well and he aims to draw upon the lessons learned there as he gets set to finish his university schooling this quarter in Palo Alto while also joinining the team in preseason.
“[The Academy] taught me a lot of things off the field,” he said. “Not only learning the philosophy of the club and how the team wants to play, but also the culture of the club.”
Couple that with his time spent alongside then-Cardinal teammates, now MLS players in Seattle’s Jordan Morris and Chicago’s Brandon Vincent during Stanford’s highly successful, national championship-laden run, Langsdorf feels that he has a good foundation to build upon as he begins his time with the Timbers.
“Those guys were leading our pack in terms of how you should be training off the field and on the field,” he said. “I think that has helped me a lot to grow as a player and as a person [and get me ready for the next level].
Perhaps most exhilaratingly for an individual who was born right at the Providence hospital that sits alongside I-84 in northeast Portland, Langsdorf is looking forward to the opportunity to play in his hometown and in a city he holds so dear.
“My favorite thing [about Portland] is how nature and the city are intertwined. You can be maybe 20 minutes outside of Portland and there’s great hiking. You could drive from downtown and only an hour away, you can go to the mountains or you could go to the beach. That’s what I love so much about it.
“It makes me pretty excited because I want my family that lives in the area to be able to watch me…It’s a lot of fun to be able to play in a familiar environment.”