Maudwindo Germain Leads FC Motown to Continued Success in the NPSL

By Michael Lewis/NPSL.com

Dilly Duka has been around the block and then some as a player and coach.

He has competed in Major League Soccer and in Albania.

So, the FC Motown head coach knows a good player when he sees one.

When it comes to Maudwindo Germain, Duka knows that the Haitian striker is truly special.

“It just seems that his playing style tends to be unpredictable,” Duka said. “When we’re in on goal, he can put it away, or he can combine with a teammate around the goal where they just put it away.  Not only is he a consistent threat to score goals, but he should have at least five assists every game.  That’s up to his teammates.  He’s just a total, total soccer player.”

Duka later added: “He’s an X factor for us.  I’m definitely happy for him, because he’s in his game.  He’s having fun out there.”

High praise, indeed.

Quite appropriately, Germain is known to his FC Motown teammates as Mo.

Germain is pretty humble and soft-spoken.  Not one to brag or beat his chest about his accomplishments.  He is old school.  He has let his play do his talking.

“Everything is going well,” he said. “I’m trying to help the team to go on.”

Going on, as in the NPSL playoffs.

He is one of the reasons that FC Motown finished the regular season with an undefeated 8-0-2 record and 26 points, six points ahead of its biggest rival, Jackson Lions FC (6-2-2, 20).  The playoffs begin this week.  FC Motown will play in the Keystone East Conference semifinals on Wednesday, July 10.

“I’m trying to help the team,” he said. “Every day I go out and play for my team, my teammates.” 

It should come as no surprise that Duka has liked what he has seen of Germain, as a player and as an individual off the field.

“Mo’s extremely quiet,” he said. “He lets his personality show on the field.  Real low maintenance.  That’s tough to find.”

The 22-year-old forward clearly loves the beautiful game.

“I am so passionate [about soccer] because I am so happy.  When I play soccer, I feel good.  It’s about soccer for me.  The passion comes to a head.”

Germain has enjoyed several memorable moments this season for Motown, but one that sticks out for Duka occurred during the 4-0 win over FC Monmouth on May 25.  It wasn’t just that Germain scored a goal in 67 minutes action, it was the chaos and problems he produced for the opposition.  His 65th minute goal lifted the hosts into a 3-0 lead.

“Mo created a penalty kick,” Duka said. “He scored a goal, which was a combination play in a box where him and one of our central midfielders, Yusuf Cueceoglu.  They combined for two, three passes where Mo just got in the ball back on the on the goal line, where he just taps it in.  It just shows you in such tight areas, he is so dangerous.  And then on open field, he was able to create a penalty kick driving 20-30 yards.  He’s just right now in such good form that obviously, as a coach and for the staff, it’s just a pleasure to have a player that’s in rhythm.”

Germain’s most memorable career matches have not come for Motown, at least not yet.  They were in two diverse international competitions.  One was for the Haitian Under-17 national team, and the other for Violette AC in the 2023 Concacaf Champions League.

In 2019, Germain represented Haiti at the Under-17 World Cup in Brazil.  He made two appearances in a pair of group stage losses.  He did not score a goal, but he felt he had an outstanding game in a defeat to the Korea Republic. 

“We lost 2-1; I played so well,” he proudly said.

Last year, he was one of several Haitian players signed by Violette AC (Haiti) to play against Austin FC in the Concacaf Champions League.  Violette booked a spot in the competition by capturing the Caribbean Club Championship in 2022.  Due to ongoing violence in Haiti last year, Violette had not participated in a competitive match for 290 days.  The Haitian club pulled off a stunning 3-0 triumph in the opening leg, which was held in Santiago, Dominican Republic on March 7, 2023.  The DR is on the same island as Haiti.

Violette could not get the required visas for the return match in Austin, Texas on March 14.  It needed players and sent out an SOS, as several Haitian players answered the call, including Germain.  The team had only three players on the bench but wound up withstanding a 33-shot assault by Austin.  Violette managed to walk out of Q2 Stadium with a 2-0 loss.  The team won the series, 3-2. So, keeping the Dynamo under three goals was important, in what turned into one of the biggest upsets in Champions League history.

Germain was a part of that second leg, going the full 90 minutes and picking up a yellow card in the process.

“That surprised everyone with that big victory,” he said. “I was so happy. I was so excited and happy, [beating] an MLS team.”

As for the political unrest and violence in his homeland, Germain hasn’t traveled to Haiti for several years and he doesn’t know when he will be able to return to the Caribbean nation to see his family again.

In 2021, he came to the U.S. to play soccer.

“I can’t come back because my country has problems,” he said. “So, I’m trying to work and play soccer here.  FC Motown reached out to me [in 2023] and gave me confidence to play again.”

Given Germain’s talent and work ethic, Duka would not be surprised if the forward winds up playing professionally in the United States, much sooner than later.

“Mo could easily be a USL Championship player when he’s on,” he said. “He’s definitely a key part of our team.  Would I be surprised if you went to a higher level?  Absolutely not.  We, FC Motown, obviously love the fact if any of the players that we have make it to these other teams at the higher levels.  It definitely helps the club.  What we’re able to do is keep guys in form, and they can take that next step whenever they get that opportunity.”

Germain has similar aspirations, although he wouldn’t mind taking another step beyond the Championship while climbing the U.S. soccer pyramid.

“That is a goal, a dream that everyone in soccer wants,” he said. “Yes, yes.  I want to play for a professional team.  I want to play in MLS.”

If he keeps scoring goals and setting up teammates, Maudwindo Germain might be able to live his dream much sooner than later. 

Photo Credit: Cameron Gustavson/FC Motown

 

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