TROUPE ON THE RISE AT BAERUM
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Sebastian Troupe looks to be adding his name to the list of up and coming American players developing their game in Norway's lower divisions.

Troupe, whose father is from South Bend, Indiana, was born and has lived his entire life in Norway but retains his dual citizenship. The 17 year old currently plays for 2. Division club Baerum SK in Norway's third level of soccer.

The club also happens to be in the same town of Eliteserien club Stabaek, home of fellow Norwegian-Americans Mikkel Diskerud and Erik Benjaminsen. An opportunity recently arose for the right back to join the first division club, but in the end, Troupe elected to stay at his current club.

"I received an offer from Stabaek last year but felt I could develop better by staying at Baerum," Troupe recently told YA. "The trainers at Baerum believe in me and think I can become a great player. They will help me improve and give more attention than I would have gotten at Stabaek."

Troupe has been with the suburban Oslo club since the age of seven when he started playing within their youth ranks. Now ten years later, the defender feels that the club is on the verge of achieving great levels of success.

"Our club's goal is to get promoted to the 1. Division and I want to be a part of that," explained Troupe. "My contract is through 2011 and I am able to train and play with the senior team. It would really have to be a great contract for me to leave Baerum for Stabaek or any other club."

Like Benjaminsen, Troupe has had the opportunity to play for the Under-17 Norwegian national team at a recent tournament in Sweden. The event was a not a UEFA or FIFA sanctioned event, thus Troupe will not be required to file the one-time national team switch petition to play for a US team.

Despite spending his entire life in Norway, the young Baerum standout still sees himself as an American and would not hesitate to wear the Stars and Stripes should USSF officials ever approach him about playing for the US.

"Playing for the US would be great. I wouldn't think twice about itů It would definitely make my dad happy. Even though we live here in Norway, he has raised us to be Americans and to be proud of that," he concluded.

Troupe will return to action with Baerum when the 2. Division season kicks off in the spring of 2010.