Forward Madison FC has re-signed defender Connor Tobin, officially bringing back its team captain from the club’s first two seasons. Tobin, 34, has not only led the Flamingos on the field, but is also a fixture beyond it thanks to his outreach to the local soccer community.
“I really feel like I’ve connected with the Madison and greater Wisconsin community,” Tobin said. “I know how much people that support the club put into it and how much the community means to them. I feel very privileged to be in this position, to be playing a kid’s game kicking a ball.”
Tobin started in 14 of Forward Madison’s 16 games in 2020, anchoring a defense that conceded the second-fewest goals in USL League One. Tobin has a connection to new Flamingos’ head coach Carl Craig, having played under him from 2012-13, and cited Craig’s philosophy as one of the reasons he decided to return.
“I’m going to ask Connor to do things a bit more like he did in Minnesota,” Craig said. “He used to love getting on the ball and driving with it. I know he’s got a big heart and he’s brave. With the leadership qualities that he’s got and the experience he’s got, he’ll be invaluable as a role model for the younger players on our roster.”
Tobin is a seasoned veteran of the American lower divisions, having developed a reputation as a standout defender for Minnesota United and North Carolina FC. Tobin has also endeared himself to Forward Madison’s supporters through his extracurricular activities, which have included baking cookies for season ticket holders, driving to Kentucky to meet fans and co-founding the USL Players Association.
As he enters his third season with the Flamingos, Tobin says there is one more piece of work he’d like to take care of: Rewarding Madison’s loyal fans with a championship.
“I think there’s unfinished business,” Tobin said. “There’s no question that the support we’ve gotten so far has been tremendous. This year, the onus is on us to provide results on the field that reciprocate what the community has given to this club.”