Club: BK Häcken
Teemu Pukki is one of the most recognizable names in Finnish football, mostly because of his knack for being in the right place at the right time.
When the unexpected happens, and a football club is in acute need of strengthening their roster, the solutions seldom work out in the long term. This is where having a wide network of contacts within the game can be really helpful, something that we at Boll Brands pride ourselves in having.
One situation like this happened in February of 2017, when BK Häcken found themselves in need of a centre half, with most free agent options already signed and pre-season well on its way. With their options limited, they reached out to inquire whether we had anyone on our books who could fit the bill. At that point, we didn’t – but we did have access to a potential good fit, Juhani Ojala.
Ojala is a product of the venerated HJK system, which has been especially effective in launching careers for young Finnish centre halves. After leaving HJK for Young Boys Bern, his career had been ravaged by one injury after another. In 2016, with his contract at Terek Groznyi up, he had returned home to Finland, to SJK, in order to get his career back on track. In February 2017, he still had one year left on his contract with SJK.
After Häcken’s interest became known, we reached out to the relevant parties, and put the cards on the table: Ojala was far too good for the Veikkausliiga, and Häcken was in dire need of adding to their backline – this was a match made in heaven, and with the window of opportunity closing fast, a decision was needed promptly. Häcken reviewed the player, and decided that he was a viable solution. Since we had been the point of contact for both of the clubs in question, Häcken asked us to handle the negotiations on their part, which we gladly did.
With the conclusion of the deal, the fear remained that panic purchases rarely work out. In this case, however, that fear was unwarranted – Ojala has been revelatory for Häcken, establishing himself as one of the league’s foremost central defenders. He has also worked his way back into the National Team first eleven, and truly gotten his career back on track.
Our relationship with BK Häcken remains strong, as it is with many other clubs in Northern Europe. Our ambition is obviously to serve our clients’ interest first and foremost, but we also want to make sure that we can help out in the cases where we can’t find a match between the club’s interest and our list of clients, which this is a prime example of.
The professional way in which this transfer was handled also convinced Juhani to sign on with us, and we have been proud and honoured to officially represent him since the completion of the aforementioned deal.