Aldergrove’s Joel Waterman has a schedule on his wall that used to include a entry for 2026, which is the year when Canada, Mexico and the United States will host the FIFA World Cup, which is held every four years.
Waterman’s goal was to win a spot on the Canada’s men’s national team in time to play that year.
He’s had to alter his goals a bit, thanks to an email that landed a just few days before Christmas, to confirm Waterman has a spot on the national team training camp, and a possible shot at playing in the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.
Waterman had been told that he was in the running for camp well over a month before that, but it “wasn’t a for-sure thing,” he said.
Then, the message arrived.
“It was a really nice email to get,” Waterman told the Langley Advance Times.
“It’s an amazing feeling.”
Waterman, a former member of Canada Soccer’s national training centre program in B.C., is the first Trinity Western University Spartan to take part in a senior men’s camp.
Among his standout accomplishments, in his final season with the Langley-based Spartans in the fall of 2018, Waterman led TWU to a Canada West silver medal, making first team all-stars in the process.
Waterman also played three seasons in the USL Premier Development League with the Kitsap Pumas in 2016, TSS FC Rovers in 2017, and the Calgary Foothills in 2018, with whom he won the league playoff championship.
Since graduating from TWU, Waterman played his 2019 season in the Canadian Premier League with Cavalry FC in Calgary before being transferred to the Montreal Impact (Major League Soccer) for the 2020 campaign.
He was the first Canadian Premier League (CPL) player to sign a U.S. Soccer Federation Major League Soccer (MLS) contract, inking a two-year deal.
Waterman made seven MLS appearances this past season, including earning six starts.
Now, the 24-year-old’s plans include a trip in January to the Canada camp presented by Allstate, in Bradenton, Fla at the IMG Center.
Waterman is one of 11 players who have earned their first-ever call-ups to the men’s team.
Camp will feature two training scrimmages as well as a Canada intra-squad scrimmage.
John Herdman, Canada Soccer’s men’s national team head coach said as a step towards the FIFA World Cup qualifiers, the January camp provides the team with “an opportunity to re-immerse the group both tactically and culturally towards competitive matches in March.”
Waterman has a new target date on his schedule.
“Now, I changed it to 2022.”