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TeensonSports.com | Sports from a Teen Perspective | Interviews, Memorabilia, Contests and More Yael Averbuch - Pro Soccer Player
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Yael Averbuch

Pro Soccer Player

1.) What advice do you have for an aspiring soccer player?

The longer I play, the more I realize how important it is to enjoy what you do. To appreciate the process of working towards a goal and have fun while aspiring to be your best should be the primary objective. Hard work never feels hard if it's enjoyable.


2.) What is your career highlight?

This is a real tough one because I've been very fortunate to be a part of many amazing teams and experiences. If I had to pick, I'd say winning my final college game in 2008 with the University of North Carolina to become NCAA Champions and having my UNC jersey retired following my senior season. It had been a dream of mine to play for UNC since I was 9, and to end my career there like that was beyond what I ever could have imagined or hoped for.

3.) Who were your heroes growing up?

I really admired Mia Hamm, Kristine Lilly, Brandi Chastain (just to name a few) and that whole generation of players who paved the way for my generation. They were and still are my heroes along with my parents. My parents are both runners and for as long as I can remember have run or worked out every morning, most times before I'm even awake. They showed me what it means to be dedicated to what you love and to make it central to your way of life.

4.) What is something about being a pro soccer player that a casual fan wouldn't know about?

It is an amazing job but it's a lot more difficult mentally than it even is physically. At times I have to work even harder on mental skills than I do on the field. It is not easy to maintain consisten confidence through various successes and disappointments. Nor is it easy to plan for the future, because the nature of the game makes it so that your job can move every season. I absolutely love playing soccer, but there is a lot that goes into it besides perfecting skills in training and performing in games.

5.) If you weren't a pro soccer player what would you be?

I'd like to think that I'd be another type of professional athlete. I love being able to challenge my physical limits so if I hadn't found soccer, I think I may have been a long distance runner or maybe even taken up another sport.

6.) What was your favorite subject in school and why?

In college I studied psychology and loved it. I find it fascinating to learn why we think in certain ways and how the mind works.

7.) Describe a time you had to persevere through a difficult situation?

When I was in high school, I was asked to leave my club team because I had chosen to go to a U19 National Team trip instead of play with them in a tournament. My coach was extremely angry with me but I highly valued my club environment and firmly believed it was the best place for my development. I continued to show up at training every week and sit the bench during games until slowly I worked myself back into his good graces. It took a while but was well worth it and I still keep in touch with my coach today and go back and train with my old club.