Wednesday, June 01 2016 @ 10:30 pm ACST
Contributed by: Troy Thompson
The following story by Sam Wharton comes to us courtesy of the Port Melbourne Football Club and originally appeared here.
The Port Melbourne Football Club is delighted to announce the signing of Mikkel Kjoege as an addition to its playing list for the remainder of season 2016.
The football journey of Kjoege so far has been a story in itself.
Whilst his face may be familiar to some Borough supporters after he completed the majority of the club’s pre-season training sessions before the Christmas break, 21-year-old Kjoege was unfortunately forced to return to his home country Denmark following the expiration of his visa soon after.
“He was very impressive in most facets of the pre-season, and we thought he was a genuine chance to make our final playing list before he experienced those issues (with his visa),” coach Gary Ayres said.
Upon returning to Australia in recent weeks, circumstances have allowed the club to re-commit to officially listing Kjoege for the rest of the year as he continues to chase his dream of playing Australian Rules football at the highest level.
When he initially left Denmark a few years ago, Kjoege was quoted in a www.worldfootynews.com article as saying that “I had to quit my job as a soldier in the Danish army and leave family and friends in Denmark, to come closer to playing AFL someday. That’s how much I want to do this.
“Everything I do, I do to become a better footballer, to hopefully one day be the first Dane to play a senior match for an AFL club in Australia. This would be my biggest dream, and definitely something I aim for.”
Ayres was immediately impressed by what Kjoege had to offer upon seeing him run around North Port Oval during the pre-season campaign.
“Mikkel certainly displayed enough to suggest that he could make our list (in the pre-season),” Ayres said.
“He possesses great endurance and solid skills, is good in contested situations and overall, displays a willingness to learn and get better. It’s a credit to him how far he’s already come with his football.
“It’s great that the club has been able to re-commit to providing him with this opportunity.”
Last year, Kjoege played 16 games in the ‘Premier Reserve’ VAFA competition with Old Xaverians, booting 22 goals and being named in the side’s best players on four occasions.
This season, he has crossed to play with his nominated ‘home’ club West Coburg in the Essendon and District Football League (EDFL), and made his debut on Saturday in the reserves side that was victorious over Pascoe Vale. He was named in the best players.
We look forward to seeing Mikkel’s development continue, and wish him the very best of luck!
Mikkel replaces the recently departed Zac Keogh on our official playing list of 68 for season 2016. Keogh played three Senior games with the Borough, booting one goal. We would like to take this opportunity to wish Zac all the very best in his future footballing endeavours, and thank him for his contribution to the club.
You can checkout some footage of Kjoege past highlights from AFL Europe in the video below.