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Forward Madison adds to defense with Jalen Crisler signing

By Jason Klein, 01/21/20, 12:00PM CST


25-year-old center back impressed coaches in combine after starring for Detroit City FC in 2019

Forward Madison FC has signed 25-year-old center back Jalen Crisler, the club announced Tuesday. Crisler, who, who becomes the second defender signed to the Flamingos’ 2020 roster, played for Detroit City FC in the National Premier Soccer League last year.

According to head coach Daryl Shore, Crisler will add a physical presence to his team’s backline.

We feel like Jalen is a guy that’s going to compete to play a lot of minutes in our defense this year,” Shore said. "Both on and off the ball, we felt like Jalen has what we are looking for. He has good size, he’s good in the air and he looks to break lines with his passing, all of which we really liked.”

READ: "This is how Jalen Crisler made the most of a year without soccer

Crisler played at Gonzaga University from 2013-17, captaining the team during his senior year and spending summers featuring for the Seattle Sounders U-23s in what is now USL League Two. After an ACL tear put his professional aspirations in jeopardy, Crisler committed himself to recovery in 2018, eventually earning a contract with Detroit City in 2019. 

“My focus is doing my role as a defender,” Crisler said. “It’s not going to be anything flashy, it’s not going to be anything fancy, but I want to have my presence felt.”

Crisler came to Shore’s attention during Forward Madison’s invite combine earlier this month, where he impressed the coaches with his consistency and versatility from the back. According to Crisler, who once worried his injury would sink his career, the contract represents a chance to excel on a new stage. 

“For me, it’s always been a dream to play at this level,” Crisler said. “I’m really excited for what 2020 has to come for Forward Madison.”

Season tickets for Forward Madison FC’s 2020 season are now available! Get yours by calling 608-204-0855 or visit

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