SLSG Illinois continues its’ Holland Tour and Monday marked a very special opportunity for one SLSG Illinois player Kuzain Wan Kamal. On Monday, Kuzain had his first training session with the Feyenoord Academy 16 squad in Rotterdam at Feyenoord’s youth facility.
Kuzain, who has played for SLSG Illinois since the age of 11, has had a tremendous year including winning a National Championship, getting called into a U17 National team camp, playing in the All Star game at the Winter Academy Showcase and, most recently, being named to the Starting XI for the entire winter showcase which included the nations top 1,000 players ages 14-18 years old.
Kuzain lives in Carbondale, Illinois where he started his club career with SI Force. Kuzain was a part of 3 teams who played in a national championship series. First as a U12 playing with the 13 Pre-Academy team in the 2011 US Club National Finals in Boise, Idaho were the team placed 5. The following year as a U13, Kuzain played with the 14 Pre-Academy team that took 2 at the US Club National Finals in Waukengan, Illinois losing out 2-4 to the Nomads of San Diego in double overtime. In 2013, Wan Kamal’s team secured SLSG Illinois second national title in Denver Colorado by defeating New York Red Bull 2-1 in the semi-final and FC Dallas 3-1 in the final.
Kuzain now plays with the 16 Academy at SLSG Illinois and after being seeing by a Feyenoord scout at an Academy Showcase, Kuzain was offered the opportunity to trial with Feyenoord for a week. Kuzain will train with the 16 Feyenoord Academy team 4 times over the next week.
According to Kuzain, “I am so honored and excited for this opportunity. I was pretty nervous during the warm-up, but started to feel more comfortable as we got into the technical work and felt like I was prepared to be competitive at this level even thought the speed of the passes and movements were two times quicker than what I usually see. The players and staff were very nice and took me around to introduce me to everyone.”
When asked what he wants out of the week, Kuzain replied, “My approach is to try show the things I do well: find the ball, distribute, play make and I want to do those things consistently. I feel like I have something to prove. I want to make the most of this opportunity by impressing the coaches and doing the very best I can.”