Vital Nizigiyimana was the only player to sign with Forward Madison from the open tryouts in 2019.
Vital Nizigiyimana earned his spot on Forward Madison’s inaugural roster through hard work and dedication shown at the team’s open tryouts. Head Coach Daryl Shore was determined to sign local players and had his sight set on four players including Nizigiyimana after the first tryout, though only Nizigiyimana advanced to receive a professional contract after the final tryout.
Vital Nizigiyimana is a Tanzania international and played soccer at Tucker High School in Georgia, Madison 56ers, and Madison College during the 2017 academic year. He logged 100 minutes, scored 1 goal, and had 1 assist.
In 2019, Nizigiyimana did not make any USL League One game appearances for Forward Madison. He started in the friendlies against Hertha Bertha, Leones Negro (Ascenso MX), and Minnesota United.
Shore believes in Nizigiyimana due to his work ethic and drive. He believes that he is ready to play. “Some people may think this is just a feel-good story, but we completely expect Vital will challenge for minutes on the field this year,” Shore said in a press release.
There’s some major excitement around re-signing Nizigiyimana. Shore saw something in him from the open tryouts that hasn’t left his sight.
“We’re just as excited to re-sign Vital as we are anyone else,” Shore said. “Every time we played him in exhibition games, he held his own, so this is a young kid who has great potential to become a very good soccer player.”
The 2019 season was dedicated to getting Nizigiyimana match fit since he had never played on that level. It was noted when he was initially signed that he can also play an attacking role as well.
Nizigiyimana showed patience with Shore and his technical staff and that has paid off in the form of 2020 re-signing.
“It was a learning experience for me,” Nizigiyimana said. “I was getting used to the fitness, getting used to the speed of it. I hadn’t played in a while, so I had to catch up.
“This year, I’m working hard in the offseason and so I can be ready to go.”
Nizigiyimana is the 10th player signed to Forward Madison’s 2020 roster.
So far, the Flamingos have signed, chronological from most recent, midfielder Brandon Eaton, midfielder Jamael Cox (FC Tucson), defender Christian Diaz, midfielder Eric Leonard, forward Jiro Barriga Toyama, midfielder J.C. Banks, forward Paulo Júnior, forward Don Smart, and goalkeeper Brian Sylvestre.