Football: Casey Castle Aiming For Pro Contract

September 13, 2017

[Written by Nathan Carr]

Casey Castle’s story is one of persistence and patience. The 26-year-old footballer is currently back home in Bermuda after spells in the USA and England, but will soon be jetting off again in pursuit of a professional contract overseas. He talks about his career so far, trials in exotic places and the future of the Gombey Warriors in an interview with Bernews.

Football has been a part of Castle’s life since he was a young child. Indeed, he comes from a very sporting family – his mother was an Olympic sprinter and his father represented Bermuda in football across all age groups. He used to do both athletics and football before focusing on the latter.

His footballing journey properly started when he was awarded a scholarship in his late teens to the USA, where he impressed for Thomas College. “I was scouted by clubs from Finland and Iceland at a Combine in the USA and visited both countries for trials,” says Castle.

“I also went to a Portuguese second division team with the help of my agent who is from Portugal. These were eye-catching experiences but I suffered from homesickness and struggled to adapt to the food and weather.”

Casey Castle Bermuda Sept 2017

Naturally disappointed but still on the hunt for a route into the professional game, Castle flew to England in the summer of 2016 with the aim of securing a full-time contract. He spent time with Walton and Hersham in the lower echelons of English football and one game particularly stands out in Castle’s memory. He was playing in a league match for Walton and little did he know, a scout from Reading was in the stands.

“Reading had sent a scout ironically to watch the left winger from the opposing team. I was at right-back and had a really good game, grabbing two assists. At full-time the Reading scout came up to my coach and asked him if I’d be interested in going on trial there. The scout called me but afterwards nothing really escalated – I was a little too old for what they were looking for.”

After Walton, he had a brief stint at Boston United, playing in their reserve team, before being sent on loan to Loughborough Dynamo to join up with fellow countryman Roger Lee.

He has not long returned from pre-season trials in England, where he trained with and was offered a contract by Worcester City, a team that plays in the sixth tier. “I declined the contract as I didn’t feel it was reasonable, and the club had already signed two other full-backs meaning I would have been third string.”

The 26-year-old is currently back home in Bermuda with PHC Zebras but plans to fly out to the United States in January when pre-season begins. “I know a lot of people in the USA and of course it’s closer to home,” he explains. “I’m good friends with Zeiko Lewis so I’m looking to move to the same league as he plays in, the United Soccer League.”

Castle’ style of play draws similarities to Manchester City defender Kyle Walker: quick, athletic and effective in one-on-one situations. He enjoys flying up and down the right flank and credits his crossing ability as one of his biggest attributes.

Frustratingly for Castle, opportunities with the national team have been limited due to recurring injury problems. Since making his senior debut as a 16-year-old, he’s won only a handful of caps and scored three goals spanning across just under 10 years.

“I think in a year or two Bermuda will be in a good place when it comes to football. The Gold Cup is a competition we want to start competing in. The likes of the USA and Mexico are too far ahead, but we have the ability to compete with the rest of the region.”

For now, though, Castle’s focus is very much on his club form and trying to turn his dream of breaking through into the professional game into a reality.

- Sports journalist Nathan Carr previously ran the Home of Caribbean Football, and reports on football throughout the region, and also serves as a guest contributor to Bernews. You can read his past reports on Bermudian football here.

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Comments (2)

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  1. Joanne Correia says:

    All the Best

  2. BDALion says:

    All the best Casey. Totally agree with your sentiments that Bermuda should be competing in the Gold Cup – that should be our goal.

    If French Guiana can do it, Bermuda can…