Misik living pro soccer dream
Former BICS, Brantford Galaxy player has finished his first year of professional soccer in PolandUpdated Thursday July 5, 2012 by Sean Allen BRANT NEWS.
Brantford’s Pat Misik is living his dream.
The 17-year-old former St. John’s College student and former Brantford Galaxy player has finished his first year of professional soccer in Poland.
“I have wanted this my whole life,” Misik said while back home in Brantford for a visit during the offseason. “This is my dream come true.”
Misik was back visiting for a month, one of two months he gets to come home to spend time with his family.
Last summer, he was part of a team from Ontario that attended an event in Poland, where players of Polish origin from around the world made up teams to compete against each other.
After the tournament, Misik and four other players were invited for a one-week trial with the Slask Wroclaw organization.
“And after that they signed me up,” he said.
This season, the first division Slask Wroclaw team took home the Polish championship in the Ekstraklasa league, the top soccer league in the country.
Misik is currently playing for the top club’s feeder team in the second division.
“We finished third in the second division,” he said. “It’s my hope, my wish and my dream to work my way up to the first division team and make a career out of it.”
With his 18th birthday not coming until November, Misik is among the younger players on the second division team. After his first season concluded, he was signed to come back and play another season as the centre midfielder for the feeder club.
The season starts in August and soccer will dominate Misik’s life until the following summer.
“During the preseason we train everyday two times a day,” he said. “During the season it is everyday with maybe one or two days off during the week.”
Misik said there was some adjustment to playing the sport overseas, especially when it comes to its popularity. He said the first division team can draw up to 42,000 fans for a home game.
“They take it very serious over there,” he said. “It’s also a faster pace and a more physical game. It was a bit of a change to get used to.”
Misik shares an apartment with two other Canadians that play for the club. The team pays his rent and provides money for food and other needs. He is taking high school classes online through Ontario’s Independent Learning Centre and needs five more credits for his diploma.
Misik credits the soccer community in Brantford for helping him achieve his goal.
“I started playing here when I was 10 for the BICS (now Brantford Galaxy Youth Soccer Club) program and played four years for them,” he said. “I learned a lot of things from the different coaches I had.
“Then I played two years with the Brantford Galaxy and that was a great experience. The European players the team had were great. They told me to keep my dream and helped me become a better player.”
Being away from home for extended periods of time is tough on Misik, but support from his family helps.
“When I went back after Christmas last year it was really hard,” he said. “But my family is so happy for me. They know it’s my dream and they just want me to live up to my aspirations.”