By Sardar Arsalan
At the age of 12 I started playing football near my house with my friends. At that time I was very fat and I was unable to run after 10 or 15 minutes. I left football for a few days. I started watching on TV. I use to follow La Liga since childhood but when I was seriously interested, I wanted to know all about this game.
Then I watched Lionel Messi playing against Getafe and I was very pleased to watch him. He broke record settled by Maradona. Then I wanted to know about him that how he started. I took help from wiki pedia and I got all the answers and got some confidence that he was ill and he was poor.
If he did so why I can’t do. I watched him and tried to copy him in ground. I had to lose my weight so I used to wake up early go for a long walk and did exercises. When I realised that I am fit for playing so I started playing.We have a club named YoungMan football club. I talked to the captain and he helped me. My friends supported me and I did my best to be better and better. I started as a goal keeper.
I worked hard. My friend is also a GK and he helped me and taught me how to save the ball, how to dive and how to shoot. After 1 year I became a good gk in my team. I want to be the best in my team so I never quit hard working. I did and soon I got my position which I wanted.
I got many chances in my team in very special matches. Everyone who was fond of football wanted me as GK in our team but my captain didn’t give me a single chance in league or tournaments. I was very dishearted. But I didn’t quit and worked more hard. Finally the day came and I got a chance in a tournament. It was second half and our team was losing by 1-0. It was a very hard match for me because it was my first experience. They tried their best to score a second and I tried my best to save.
Suddenly our team got a penalty and we leveled it 1-1. My performance was better so they decided that I will save penalties but my captain didn’t give me chance. Other team was unlucky that they netted only 3 penalties and we netted 4 of 5. We won and celebrated. Everyone was very happy from my performance. After that we beat 6 teams and reached the semi final.
Everyone suggested the captain to give me a chance but he didn’t give me. Our team lost the semi final by 3-0 and knocked out very badly. Well we were happy to see the team in the semis first time. After that, I left goal keeping and started to play as mid fielder. I worked hard for it. I followed Iniesta and Xavi. I learnt from their videos.
I tried to perform like them and I did. Always tried to give my best for the team and now I am the captain of my team. I want to play for Pakistan and want Pakistan in the top FIFA rankings. I never tried to hide the fact that my only goal is to be the best. Doesn’t matter if I will not be selected in the national team. I’ll play this game till I can and love this game till my last breath because its not just a game its my life.
This article is part of the exclusive reader-submitted series ‘FPDC Stories’. If you too want your footballing story heard, email us at s.sohail@footballpakistan to get published.