A 15-year old teenager from Greece is regarded as a rising football star in Singapore and has been nominated for a prestigious award which could send him to a European football club for training.
Born to a Singaporean father and a Greek mother, Vasileios Chua grew up in Kastoria, northwestern Greece, and moved to Singapore when he was ten years of age.
A National Football Academy (NFA) Under-15 striker, Chua has been nominated for The New Paper Dollah Kassim Award.
The award recognizes young footballers who display character as well as excellence in the sport. An overseas training stint at a prestigious football club is granted as part of the award.
Speaking to Singapore’s New Paper, Chua explained how he developed his love for football.
“I was two when Greece won the Euros so, I don’t really remember much. But as I grew up, I became more aware of the significance of the win after watching the tournament highlights and Greece’s road to the final,” he told reporters.
“I know that this win meant a great deal to the Greeks, especially since life in Greece is pretty tough for the people during that time until now.” Chua added.
“The win really united the people and brought joy to all the Greeks in the world.”
A Secondary 3-level student, Chua has stayed disciplined so that he can continue to juggle his studies with training, which takes place five times a week.
The young footballer explains, “I made sure that I used the time after school and before training to do some homework, and then stayed up a little after training to finish it.”
Standing at 1.80m (5 feet 11 inches) and weighing 66 kg (123 pounds), Chua first started playing football as a goalkeeper, but became a forward three years ago.
“People tend to overlook my ability when I am on my feet because of my height. But I believe that a striker needs to be technically sound, because I cannot rely just on my height,” he stated.
On being nominated for The New Paper Dollah Kassim Award, Chua stated “I appreciate the nomination. It’s a great honour to represent the national team. I take great pride in that.”
Source: New Paper of Singapore