Jahn Regensburg have one of Bundesliga 2's most promising defensive talents in the form of Canada centre-back Scott Kennedy.
bundesliga.com looks at the 24-year-old underpinning Regensburg's promotion charge…
Club: Jahn Regensburg
Position: Central defender
Country: Canada (five caps)
Born in Calgary, Canada - birthplace of former Bundesliga stars Kevin McKenna and Owen Hargreaves - Kennedy started out at Calgary Chinooks. It was during a European tour with the club that the defender first caught the eye of football scouts, who convinced Kennedy to cross the pond. Kennedy did just that, moving to SB Chiemgau Traunstein in Bavaria at age 18. After two years, Kennedy traded Germany for Austria, where his career gained traction.
In the 2018/19 season, Kennedy was an ever-present at the back for Austrian Bundesliga 2 outfit SK Austria Klagenfurt. He started all but one match as the newly promoted ensemble managed a top-half finish and had the fourth-best defensive record in the divison. Kennedy also chipped in with three goals.
Kennedy's 2019/20 campaign was blighted by a groin injury that caused him to miss the first half of the season. However, once recovered, Kennedy was once again back in the starting eleven as Klagenfurt only just missed out on the Austrian Bundesliga 2 title.
These exploits convinced Jahn Regensburg to bring the 6'3" defender back to Germany ahead of the 2020/21 Bundesliga 2 season. Kennedy made 16 starts and 22 total appearances in the second tier, helping to keep Regensburg clear of relegation trouble in 14th place. He also impressed during the Bavarians' run to the DFB Cup quarter-finals, scoring against Cologne in the last 16.
Kennedy's performances in Regensburg colours earned him a call-up to the Canada national team. In June 2021, Kennedy made his debut for his country and then played in two further World Cup qualifiers. Canada won all three matches by an aggregate score of 8-0. His most recent appearance in the national team was an hour-long outing in a 1-1 draw against the USA.
Plays a bit like: Willi Orban
Like any sizeable centre-back, Kennedy is not just useful in defence. He can also be a threat in the opposition area, winning duels and latching onto aerial balls, in much the same way as RB Leipzig's no-nonsense centre-half Willi Orban.
Did you know?
When he left Canada, Kennedy spoke no German and admitted that being away from home was a challenge. Nonetheless, he appears to have adapted well and now is fluent in the language.
Watch: Skip to 00:47 to see Scott Kennedy's first Bundesliga 2 goal
What they're saying
"That was as strong a debut as I've seen for this country," - Canada coach John Herdman on Kennedy's impressive showing in a back three against Suriname
"I wasn't always 6'3", so I wasn't needed [in defence]. I just sort of grew into it and I love to defend. I love people needing to count on me. I love that pressure." - Kennedy, having played in midfield and at full-back in his youth