By Fahim Uddin
I have always sustained a strong affection for soccer, as it’s been passed down through my family’s roots. My dad especially has always had a strong connection to the sport, making it an important part of my upbringing. When he was a teenager, he played for a small soccer league in Sardarpara, Bangladesh. For a couple of years, he spent his free time competing in games with neighboring villages.
Now at a similar age as he was, I continue to feed my passion for soccer — I watch the World Cup every year. I closely eyed the 2018 FIFA World Cup last summer, despite a disappointing outcome for my team. I support Nigeria, not because of a personal connection to the country, but because of their soccer tactics, specifically their fast-paced offense and ball movement.
Now that the World Cup is over, I continue to keep soccer at the forefront of my free time. I watch other leagues such as the UEFA, or Union of European Football Associations, The Asian Football Confederation and the U.S.’s Major League Soccer.
Actually being on the field has been an important part of my life as well. One of my favorite memories of playing soccer is from back in middle school. I had scored five goals in an exhibition game against a second-seeded team, a much higher-standing team than my own. After winning the game, the whole team celebrated by a group McDonald’s dinner.
However, that was one of the last times I played soccer competitively. In recent years, I’ve turned my attention more toward my interest in basketball. The rigor of college academics has also had me put sports behind the priority of my classes.
There are a couple soccer players who I look up to more than others. My current two favorites are none other than Lionel Messi, a player for Argentina, and Neymar Jr., a player for Brazil. Both players work to inspire future soccer players to work hard and someday reach the top of the FIFA rankings and the soccer spotlight. Additionally, both of their skillsets are incomparable to other professional soccer players. With unbeatable tactics in dribbling, team assisting and fake tricks, both players are adored because of the strong representations they make for their cultures.
As a college student now, I look forward to attending Boston University’s soccer games, especially the upcoming game Tuesday. I hope to join in the school spirit with fellow people that share my passion. Not only for soccer, but hopefully other sport leagues as well.
Soccer has been a part of my life since I was a child and has always been something that brought me together with the people around me. Because it is watched and played all around the world, it can connect people in a way many other sports cannot.