John Rojas – Los Angeles, California
“When I came to America, I had already under my belt some locker room experience. First playing academy soccer and following the dream to become profesional footballer (never become reality) and then as a journalist. I was 26 at that time.
Since I remember, soccer has been in my head, my room, my life. Playing different divisions, writing about some great games and calling or being part of radio broadcasts of some good and bad encounters.
But, what my life gained in America through soccer wouldn’t be possible in my country of birth (Colombia). Here, I coached kids, some of whom went to MLS academies. I played with great African players and people up in The Bronx; I was part of a team full of Argentinians, Uruguayans, some Chileans, Paraguayans and Americans. We played on a league in Brooklyn with teams from México, Poland, Perú, and more.
I have had the opportunity to interview some great star players and kids with the same dream I had to become a professional footballer. Lately I was part of the radio broadcast team for an MLS organization owned by people from Europe, America and the United Arab Emirates. With workers and players from all over the world. And my partner on those broadcast was a great professional from Brooklyn, from a Jewish family and raised for some years in México.
Long story short, America gave to my soccer story the multicultural, diversity, open mind, friends and personal structure that I wouldn’t probably get otherwise. All through soccer, with soccer, for soccer, by soccer. My two boys are named after two of the greatest footballers, one from Uruguay, the other from Italy, neither of the two countries directly related to me.
Soccer is football, football is a language, a lifestyle, a way to connect, a structural form of thinking. It is so immense that the Earth has the shape of a football.”