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Soccer
Friday, August 12, 2022
Russell Signs with AFC Totton

IslandStats.com
Following the resolution of the requisite administrative red tape to ensure his international clearance, AFC Totton is delighted to finally announce the signing of Tokia Enrique Zidane Russell Jr. The 22-year-old striker from Bermuda joins the Stags after a successful pre-season trial.

Although he was born and mostly-raised in Bermuda, part of Enrique’s education was in the UK at Sparsholt College, during which he played football for Hampshire Schools and impressed well enough to earn a place in the AFC Bournemouth Academy. But in 2017, he suffered an ACL injury while playing for the Cherries’ U18s in a friendly against MK Dons.

After recovering his fitness, Enrique had spells with Cheadle Town in the North West Counties League and Ilkeston Town in the Southern League Premier Division Central. In 2021, he played for Pembroke Hamilton Club Zebras – known colloquially as PHC Zebras – in the Bermudian Premier Division.

Since scoring on his international debut against the Bahamas in 2020, Enrique has gone on to accumulate a total of 6 caps and 2 goals for Bermuda. To date, he has been used mainly as back-up to the team’s talisman, the Bristol City and former QPR striker Nahki Wells, who is 10 years his senior. Prior to arriving at the Snows Stadium this summer, Enrique featured for his national team in the CONCACAF Nations League against Montserrat in the Dominican Republic, coming off the bench in a 3 - 2 defeat.

International football runs in the Russell family. Enrique’s late father Tokia was a defender, who won 8 caps and scored 1 goal for Bermuda from 2000-2004. His uncle Antwan Russell, a forward, also had a spell with Ilkeston Town during a career in which he represented his country on 11 occasions and scored 7 goals, while Enrique’s grandfather Earl Russell is widely regarded in Bermuda as one of the country’s best ever footballers.

Dual-registered with AFC Totton and Totton & Eling, Enrique made his Wessex League debut for the Millers in the opening day 3-1 victory at Romsey Town on Saturday 06 August. He also scored for Totton & Eling against the Stags in the recent pre-season friendly between the two sides at the Snows Stadium, where he will be aiming to make his mark this season.

Stags boss Jimmy Ball said of his latest signing:

"Enrique has done very well during pre-season and shown us that he has a bit about him. He's fast, quick-witted and skilful, and he's already developing some good understandings with his teammates on the pitch that I'm sure will reap rewards throughout this season.

"He still needs a bit of work on his match fitness, but he's been working hard and showing the right kind of attitude and discipline, so I'm pleased to finally be able to officially welcome Enrique to the squad."
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