Tips for becoming a professional soccer player

Millions of boys and girls around the world aspire to make soccer their profession. However, getting to the top is no easy task. The process leaves most of those who try it on the road.

At SLAM International we are well aware of this reality, which is why we are trying to put in place a system to smooth that path. Stay with us to find out what you should do if you want to become a professional soccer player.

All sports appear in the lives of children as a simple game, entertainment, or even a way to promote healthy living. However, as these youngsters reach a higher level, coaches or their own families begin to consider a further step, to become a professional. But do you know how to become a professional in soccer? What steps do you have to take?

At SLAM International we understand that the process to be followed by a person who wants to start a professional career should be mixed, so as to combine their sports preparation with their academic training. In our center we strive to serve as an innovative training school for students with talent and interest in sports.

And for this we have specific programs for students of sporting excellence, a pioneering system in Spain that prepares young people at all levels, from the physical to the mental, tactical, technical, socio-affective and purely academic.

Requirements to become a professional soccer player

To be a professional soccer player, the first thing is to demonstrate a sufficient value, a level that exceeds the average and that is also accompanied by a very high physical preparation. This can only be achieved with a lot of dedication and training. In the end, as in all facets of life, the more effort you put in, the more chances you have of reaching your goal.

The decisive phase comes when the youngsters are teenagers, between 16 or 17 years old and up to their twenties, because that is when they face their last phase of training in lower categories to move on to seniors, where they reach professionalism. At that point, the options may be the following.

Be part of a soccer team with a professional structure.

If you are already immersed in a club with a professional team, it will be the entity itself that signs a contract as a professional player, with all its associated rights and obligations.

Have a representative

Another option to reach professional soccer is through agents. In Spain, there are a multitude of agencies that represent young athletes who are advancing in their soccer career. If when the time comes to make the leap, a club trusts them, they will be able to sign a professional contract. In this case, the agent or agency offers these athletes to the clubs.

Club scouts

This alternative is halfway between the first and the second. It is possible that the club in which a teenager competes is federated, but does not have a professional structure.

In these leagues, there are numerous scouts who follow athletes and provide reports to professional clubs, which may contact the players to offer them a contract.

Agreements with clubs

A final possibility is that carried out by sports associations, foundations and academic centers that have agreements with professional clubs. There are well-known examples in Spain, such as Club Deportivo Canillejas in Madrid or Rayo Majadahonda.

This is the formula we follow at SLAM International, as we develop agreements with top-level institutions around the world (sports clubs, foundations, federations and high-tech companies) to advance in the field of sports and academic training. One example is Liverpool F.C.

How to play soccer professionally

Once we know the ways to become a soccer player and make this activity a profession for a few years, we want to focus on what young people who want to achieve that goal should do, or what is the same, what it is like to play soccer as a professional.

The main key is to think of the sport as a goal to be achieved without deviating from the path. In this sense, it is not enough to have technical skills and a quality superior to that of other teammates, but this must be accompanied by preparation at all levels: physical, correctness in schedules, intense and continuous training, tactical and technical learning, emotional preparation.

Last but not least, we must internalize that the professional life of any athlete has a deadline. In the case of soccer, although it is increasingly delayed by the improvement in physical condition, it usually does not exceed 35-40 years. This only implies a career, in the best case scenario, of 20 years as a professional.

For this reason, at SLAM International we insist on the need for academic training. In this way, once the soccer player has left the sport at a competitive level, he will be able to start new professional adventures, which may or may not be related to his previous life.

What is a dream for millions of boys and girls in Spain, and the world, only becomes a reality in a small percentage of cases. Becoming a professional soccer player involves many sacrifices, but it can be, with the help of centers such as SLAM International, a springboard for other options for personal growth if the final goal is not achieved.