MILWAUKEE — At 13-years-old, Jesus Ramirez-Pabon, or Chuy as his friends and family call him, has found a home on the pitch.
“I know I can do something with soccer. I like to train a lot, I like to learn new things and new skills,” said Chuy.
Though he never dreamed he would be one of 18 players selected for US Club Soccer’s 2020 id2 National Selected International Tour Boy’s Team.
“I didn’t know I could get to this kind of level, I thought that I was an average player. But now that I’m going I see that I’m actually pretty good,” said Chuy.
FC Wisconsin’s co-director and coach, Ben Shepherd, explains that while Chuy may come across as a quiet individual, it’s just because his actions speak louder than words.
“He’s more of a leader by example. In terms of how he plays and his work rate, obviously has the ability to go with it. It’s more so he is at every training session, he loves to play and he is always doing things on his own. That’s a big difference,” said Shepherd.
Come March, Chuy will first travel to New Jersey to meet his teammates.
Then it’s off to Glasgow for four days before moving on to London.
“In Europe, the game is very different. Technically the players won’t be much better. But it will be from a tactical standpoint. Just because of the culture and the way they are brought up. Their knowledge of the game is probably more advanced. So it will help him with his soccer IQ,” said Shepherd.
Let’s not forget, that while most 13-year-olds would be excited about a mini vacation, Chuy only has one mission.
“I can represent that my coaches and my teammates have helped me to a certain level. I can show them what FC Wisconsin is all about,” said Chuy.