Grassroots players must listen to Aubameyang’s fine advice to his younger self

By Daily Sports on April 5, 2018

Views: 753

Arsenal’s new striker Pierre Emerick Aubameyang has been speaking with the club’s media where he discussed his career history.

The January new buy also offered an advice he would have given himself if he could wind back the hands of time, and I find the advice to be timely for many young players hoping to make it to the top from the grassroots.

After struggling to break into AC Milan’s first team, the striker rebuilt his career in France with Saint-Etienne before establishing himself as one of Europe’s deadliest marksmen at Borussia Dortmund.

Now right at home in north London, Aubameyang recently became Arsenal’s first player to score five goals in his first six Premier League games, and has thanked his dad for his ability to settle into new surroundings so quickly.

“I’ve travelled throughout my life, because my father was a footballer,” he told Arsenal Player. “I’ve experienced many different cultures and languages, so that was a very good experience for me, to be able to move around quite frequently.

“Back then I played on the wing, rather than up top. I was on the flank because of my pace. I also did a lot of dribbling back then – I don’t do that so much now, since I’m a centre forward. However I’d say I had similar qualities, such as pace and the ability to beat players.

“The advice I’d give my youngster self is to always believe in what you’re doing,” added Aubameyang. “You need to give yourself the chance to succeed.

“That doesn’t come from anyone else, you need to give yourself a chance and to fight for your objectives. I’ve fought hard – it’s never been easy for me. I always kept on believing too and this is where it’s taken me today.”

Liverpool legend Ian Rush: No football without grassroots

Ian Rush says his desire to help develop football at grassroots level is the reason why he has launched his own foundation.

Liverpool’s all-time leading goalscorer decided to bring forward the launch for the Ian Rush Foundation after learning he is to be recognised with the inaugural Legends of Sport Award.

“My desire to create the foundation was because I wanted to give something back to grassroots football,” Rush told Sky Sports News.

“People always talk about football at the top but beneath that you need an infrastructure at the bottom. People forget about the grassroots and if you lose that you lose everything.

“There are also so many volunteers and people out there who are supporting grassroots football and they’re doing it for nothing. They put up the goals and the nets and they pick kids up so that they can get to the game.

“What these people do is unbelievable and they don’t get recognised enough but we must support them by giving them the right facilities.”

Rush has worked extensively with youngsters in his role with Liverpool.

He has for long been a Liverpool ambassador and says he has been inspired during the course of his travels representing the club around the world.

“I’m taking a worldwide view with the foundation, not just in Wales or in Liverpool,” he said.

“I’ve been over to India lots of times and I was really touched when I went to visit the children in the slums. The most amazing thing was that the kids were all smiling.”

The Welshman spent a season at Juventus in the eighties

“Give them a ball, they’ll kick it around and they’re happy. Money can’t buy that kind of happiness. But if we can help them a little bit through the foundation, whether that’s something to wear or some equipment or a facility that they can play at, it will make them better.

“I want the boys and girls to enjoy themselves in what they do and I want to put back into grassroots football. The job of the Ian Rush Foundation is to give them the apparatus, the facilities and everything so that they can enjoy it. The more they enjoy it, the more likely they are to get to a higher level.”

Rush says he simply wants kids interested in football to enjoy themselves

Rush’s dream of creating his own foundation has been facilitated by Avalon Sports.

“Ian has been very active at grassroots level with Liverpool over the years and that's the starting point for the Ian Rush Foundation,” Avalon Sports director Saad Wadia said.

“We’ve both come from similarly modest backgrounds but Ian has gone on to have such a decorated career. I cannot affect change the way Ian can. He can impact more people in a day than maybe I could in my whole life so we’re delighted to be working with him on this.”

Rush will be presented with a Legends of Sport Award by Mayor of London Sadiq Khan at a glittering ceremony where friends and former team-mates including Graeme Souness and Phil Thompson will be present.

“It’s a real honour to present the Legends of Sport Award to Ian Rush, a true Kop legend and a real boyhood hero of mine,” Khan said.

Source Daily Sports

Posted April 5, 2018

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