Caleb Francis

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Caleb Francis
Personal information
Date of birth (1968-02-08) 8 February 1968 (age 46)
Place of birth Mauritius
Height 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Playing position Midfielder/Striker
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
?–1987 Lillehammer
1988 Kongsvinger[1] 2 (0)
1989 Fremad
1990–1995 Kongsvinger[1] 99 (18)
1996–1998 Bryne
1999–2000 Kongsvinger[1] 34 (5)
2000–2002 Ull/Kisa
2003 Larvik
Teams managed
2007–2008 Runar
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Caleb Francis (born 8 February 1968) is a Norwegian retired football midfielder. He was born in Mauritius, and spent most of his career at Kongsvinger, Bryne and Ull/Kisa. After retiring as an active player he has worked as both football commentator and coach.

Career[edit]

He hails from Mauritius, and came to Norway in the mid-1970s.[2] He joined Kongsvinger IL from Lillehammer FK ahead of the 1988 season,[3] and played his debut match in the Norwegian Premier League against Vålerenga Fotball. However, his performance was hampered by racist abuse from some of Vålerenga's supporters. In addition to verbal abuse, some supporters tossed bananas at Francis to make allusions to monkeys. Due to the psychological effect Francis did not play well, and was substituted.[4] He played only one more match[1] before giving up top-tier football. He also stayed away from school. However, Kongsvinger IL people persuaded him to continue his career, and he played for Fremad while doing his compulsory military service at Gardermoen.[2]

He rejoined Kongsvinger IL in 1990, and made his breakthrough in the first team in 1991. He was a regular first-team player more or less until 1995.[1] His contract was not renewed and he went to Bryne FK.[5] In 1998 he became the top goalscorer in Norway's second highest league, but was still not given a new contract.[6] He rejoined Kongsvinger.[1] In the summer of 2000 he left to work as a football commentator in Eurosport. He also signed a contract with Ullensaker/Kisa IL.[7]

In 2002 he was hired as a commentator for Canal + together with Claus Eftevaag.[8] He left Ullensaker/Kisa after the season, joined Larvik Fotball and lived in a flat in Stavern. He also worked as a teacher. However, he soon lost his job, and broke a leg in a Larvik match in September. On New Year's Eve, his house burned down while he was away. Frustrated, he announced his probable retirement from football, but was hired as a commentator in TV 2 one week after losing his house.[9] He stayed in TV 2 for several years.

He also began a coaching career. He first trained the junior team of Larvik-based club Halsen IF for two years. Ahead of the 2007 season he was hired as joint head coach (with Richard Berg) of IL Runar.[10] He left in late 2008 after steering the club to promotion.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Fossum, Geir. "Caleb Francis". Fozzum.com (Kongsvinger IL statistics) (in Norwegian). Retrieved 9 August 2009. 
  2. ^ a b Sjem, Sturla (21 May 1991). "Mobbeofferet som ikke lot seg knekke". VG (in Norwegian). p. 23. 
  3. ^ "Spilleroversikt 1. divisjon fotball foran sesongstarten" (in Norwegian). Norwegian News Agency. 11 April 1988. 
  4. ^ Morken, Terje (29 June 1988). "Rasisme i 1.div.". Nordlys (in Norwegian). p. 14. 
  5. ^ "Sportsnotiser" (in Norwegian). Norwegian News Agency. 27 November 1995. 
  6. ^ "Opprydning i Bryne". Aftenposten (in Norwegian). 29 October 1998. p. 66. 
  7. ^ "Sportsnotiser". VG (in Norwegian). 28 July 2000. 
  8. ^ "Sportsnotiser". VG (in Norwegian). 17 July 2002. 
  9. ^ Svegaarden, Espen (8 January 2004). "Mistet alt". VG (in Norwegian). p. 35. 
  10. ^ Hem, Tom-Erling (9 September 2006). "Caleb Francis signerte for Runar". Sandefjords Blad (in Norwegian). Retrieved 9 August 2009.