At 9:30 a.m. local time in West Virginia, the alarm clock for the 20-year-old boy rang. Young player Max Schneider knows what to expect: until 1 in the afternoon, the focus is entirely on football. Then the lecture hall calls in and Max dedicates himself to his studies at Marshall University.
Until 2019, he played for Bayer Leverkusen U-19. There it quickly became apparent to him – also due to unfortunate injuries – that it was simply not enough for the professional field.
A perspective away from the football field
So he tried his luck in the United States. “I wanted to study and not just play football. And I’ve always been a fan of AmericaSo, says Max Schneider. So the perspective is far from the football field. This is as good as it is impossible in the German sports system.
High tuition costs in American colleges are covered by scholarships. Even if it starts a little, as Max remembers with a smile:I arrived here. And in the dorm I was staying in, there were no blankets or pillows. I slept on my winter jacket for the first week.”
I got a title in the college league
But this was soon forgotten, he played fast, successful football with Marshall University. In its first year, the team reached the last sixteen of the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association). They even won the title this year.
The situation can be compared a little with the U19 Bundesliga, which is divided into regions. It’s the same in the United States, with the so-called “conferences”. The best teams then determine the best college football team in the United States in the final tournament. And this year it is called: Marshall University.
Quality as in the regional league
Max, who plays in the defensive midfield, ranks the quality of the teams in “Regional upper league areaA. believes that sport will continue to grow in importance.
Especially with regard to the 2026 FIFA World Cup, to be held in Canada, Mexico and the United States of America:They are investing a lot of money now to put real pressure on them. Americans have a lot of people in the country. And I think they can be expected in the next few years. “
Via MLS in the German league
After winning the title, things must start now. Max hopes to one day be recruited into MLS (Major League Soccer). The first pilot training sessions are scheduled for the next few weeks. “We have a quality that’s interesting to many clubs. We are cheap players. We don’t charge any money. But we have the talentHe explains.
The German Football Federation also recognizes the youth system in the United States. “The incredibly good conditions on the site are definitely an advantage,” Young Gotti Chatzialexio of the Football Association says in the sports program.
Staying abroad can have a great added value for development. “An enormous trend can be seen, especially in the women’s sector. This is why our U-19 National Coach Catherine Peter maintains very close contact with our players and colleges and was in the United States shortly before the start of the pandemic.Chatzialexiou says.
Wing: 28.05.2021, 08:00