(Oranjestad)—Since last year, the young soccer player, Fabio Alexander Montilla, was preparing to fly to Madrid, Spain, so he can participate in the Real Madrid Foundation World Challenge Tournament 2023. From March 31st to April 8th of this year, Fabio was at the Real Madrid Sports City to play in this tournament. He sat down with our reporter to share his unforgettable experiences there.
It was last year that Fabio received an invitation from the Real Madrid Foundation to play in their annual tournament after he participated in the soccer trial organized by the foundation and held in Aruba. This was his biggest dream come true.
“I had a great time. The soccer over there is very good, and so was my team, but they were short and the kids over there are pretty tall. They are stronger and since the kids from my team were short, the bigger kids kept pushing them aside. I think if we had played against kids our own size, we would’ve gotten much farther,” he expressed.
Fabio’s team placed 4th overall and what was most exciting for him was that he was selected team captain. He shared that they played well and that everyone did their absolute best during the tournament. “We played well; we played with strength, passion, attitude and heart. I defended the best I could and everyone else did their best too,” he said.
Fabio normally plays defense and during the tournament, he scored two goals, which made him very happy, especially because he was a defense. He told our reporter that he was also happy because he received great feedback from different people and coaches at the tournament. “Everyone liked how I played. I hope to go there more often.”
Claudia Merino, Fabio’s mother, flew to Spain with the soccer player and she also told our reporter her experiences during this exciting time for her son. “I thought it to be a beautiful experience for the kids. They got the opportunity to play with kids from all over the world and each one had their own unique style of playing soccer,” she indicated.
Merino remarked that it was not easy for the children, seeing as this was something completely new and difficult too, because no one in Fabio’s team really knew each other, so they had to adapt quickly to able to play together as a team. Despite the short time they had to train together, she was happy with the results and her son’s performance.
“I actually think they’ll never forget this experience, because they never imagined to be competing in an international tournament organized by the actual Real Madrid Foundation. I think it’s absolutely beautiful and I’m so glad that Fabio got his chance too,” she finalized.