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TTHFC - Florida Elite Tallahassee

TTHFC - Florida Elite Tallahassee

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Feb, 2019

The journey of Johnny Fitzgerald

TUFC, TTHFC, Real Salt Lake Az, Barca Academy Az, Florida Elite SA


What are some of your best memories with our club?
My favorite memories with my Tallahassee clubs are probably just all of the friendships I made through playing soccer at a young age. All of the memories we made messing around at hotels on tournament weekends make me smile when I look back on them. I also think back to all of the developing and learning I made a young age in my soccer career and believe that is one of the main reasons I have made it as far as I have.

How did you handle being away from home for long periods?
Moving across the country from everything I knew and loved at just the age of 14 was definitely not an easy transition for me. I struggled with homesickness at a young age and for the first few weeks in Arizona; however, when I stepped outside on the soccer field all of my worries, anxieties, and stresses went away. I think that constant love for the game and will to chase my dream helped me push through the darker days. I did not do it alone though, I met some amazing people along the way and developed really good friendships with them. My parents also provided an outlet or place of relief because they were always a phone call away and whenever I had a rough day or was questioning my future they would help me out of it.

What or who were some of your driving influences on route to becoming a Div 1 student-athlete? 
I believe that my love for the game of soccer is one of the main driving influences that pushed me to get where I am today. That love for the game of soccer was developed by and with my coaches and teammates at an early age. Dave Scott and Tim Jones along with all of my teammates are responsible for that. However, a think a lot of the credit has to go to my parents. This is because they always kept me level headed and focused on my future. They drove me hours and hours around Florida and then let their only child move across the country from them at the age of 14 to chase his dream. This has helped me realized how much my parents have done for me and how they are the main reason I am a D1 student-athlete. I also want to repay them for everything they have done for, so that goal still pushes me to this day.

What would you say to your 13-year-old soccer playing self today?
I would say enjoy playing soccer and having fun with it while you can. Keep developing your love for the game and never stop working. The next few years of your life will contain some crazy ups and downs along with challenges you have never faced; however, you will also start realizing the kind of person you want to be and what kind of people you should surround yourself with. Soccer will become somewhat of a job and the competition will only get harder, but don't lose track of that love for the game. Also, don't forget the people that are helping you right not because they will deserve as much credit for your success as you do. The grind does not stop.

What's your next long term objective?
My next long term objective is to graduate college and receive my Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. Hopefully, at that point, I would be selected for the MLS draft and have the possibility of going pro in the United States. However, if that does not happen I might take a year or two to explore Europe and see if I can continue my soccer career overseas. But my main goal whatever happens, is to repay my parents for everything they have done for me because they deserve it and are the reason I am the person I am today.
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