Maxim Tissot received the best birthday gift a pro soccer player could ask for… he heard his name called by the coach for the very first time in a game.
The Impact defender made his first ever appearance for the club in Sunday’s 1-1 draw with Columbus, coming on in the 88th minute of the game, but one day earlier, he celebrated his 21st birthday.
“My mother kept telling me all week that it was destiny,” said Tissot with a huge smile following his MLS debut. “She felt that it was my fate to play my first game on my birthday weekend and it happened. The first thought I had as I got on the field was of my parents. They were in the stands for the game.”
Despite his mother’s feeling of fortune for her son, the Impact rookie from Gatineau was still pretty nervous when he got the call.
“I was stressed, but happy as well,” he added. “I had a lot of energy and even though I played only six minutes, I felt that I got a chance to show that I was ready.”
Tissot’s first MLS appearance with the pro team is a continuation of the progress shown by the young left back. He was named Defender of the Year in the Canadian Soccer League in 2012 with the Impact U21 team.
In February, he signed his first pro contract and this past weekend, he became just the second Impact Academy product ever to play a regular season game in MLS as he was brought in to help the Impact find a winning goal.
“They told me to try and cross the ball as often as possible,” said Tissot, discussing what the coaches had asked of him before he got out onto the pitch. “I have a good cross and they wanted me to get the ball into the box as much as possible, but I didn’t really get as many opportunities as I would have liked, but I do think I was able to provide some help offensively in the last few minutes of the game.”