BANNER ELK, N.C. – The Lees-McRae College men's soccer program has announced the signing of five student-athletes to join the team for the 2018 season Monday morning. The newest group of Bobcats include: Johan Hedberg (Stockholm, Sweden), Philip Oldin (Uppsala, Sweden), Anton Sunstrom (Ostersund, Sweden), Palani Nieknul (Greensboro, North Carolina) and Martin Myklebust (Moss, Norway).
Johan Hedberg, a versatile, 6'0 defender from Stockholm, Sweden. Johan joins the Bobcats from Taby FK of the U19 Allsvenskan. Primarily a wing-back, Johan's strength and athleticism allow him to play across the back line.
Coach's Take on Hedberg: "He trains and plays with tremendous intensity and demands the best of himself each and every day," said LMC Head Coach Rich Wall. "I'm excited and am looking forward to seeing how he will fit into our team throughout the spring season."
Philip Oldin, a 5'9 central midfielder from Uppsala, Sweden. Philip joins the Bobcats from the club IK Sirius of the U19 Allsvenskan. Philip also featured in a handful of matches for the U21 side with IK Sirius as well.
Coach's Take on Oldin: "Philip, has very good feet, he's quick with the ball, and good at finding open space with his movements," Wall said. "He is the type of player that makes everyone on the team better come match day, because of the way he can spread the ball around."
Anton Sunstrom, a 6'3 goalkeeper from Ostersund, Sweden. Anton joins the Bobcats from IFK Ostersunds where he is a member of the clubs senior team which competes in the Division 2 Norrland.
Coach's Take on Sunstrom: "Anton is expected to come in and compete for the starting goalkeeper position from day one with the returning class of keepers," remarked Wall. "He is a big presence in goal, a strong shot stopper, and is confident in his decision making with the ball in his hands and at his feet."
Palani Nieknul, a 5'11 defender from Greensboro, North Carolina. Palani joins the Bobcats from the N.C. Fusion U19 Developmental Academy.
Coach's Take on Nieknul: "Palani is a solid defender, that just gets the job done," Wall said of Nieknul. "Throughout our recruitment of Palani, he has been a regular starter for Fusion at center back. He's well coached, intelligent, and comfortable in possession."
Martin Myklebust, a 5'9 defender from Moss, Norway. Martin joins the Bobcats from Rade IL of the Men's 4th Division in Norway.
Coach's Take on Myklebust: "Martin is an active outside back, that isn't afraid of a challenge and enjoys joining into the attack," said Wall. "He exhibits good positional understanding while defending, and attacking making him an ideal modern day outside back."