Onix The Gem
We want to share a story that has touched our hearts and epitomizes what Next Gen is about - to inspire, educate and empower young soccer players to reach their potential both on and off the field.
Two years ago, we found a 12 year-old boy named Onix Murillo playing recreational soccer in Atlantic City, New Jersey for a club called Youth in Motion. We Really liked the look of him as a player and understood that the family could not afford for him to join a travel team.
We invited him to join Next Gen's Urban Promise Program. Through Generous donations from our family of friends, Onix was able to come to a Residential IDF at Golden Goal Sports Complex. The IDF featured international professional club coaches from Europe and South America. Since they identified him as a player of great promise, we invited Murillo into a Next Gen Select Squad. This squad went on to play in the u13 Champions League tournament, Cup Bassevelde, in Belgium.
The tournament featured Barcelona, Real Madrid, PSG, Bayer Leverkusen, Club Brugge, Borussia Dortmund, Celtic and Ajax. Not only did he play well in this tournament, but he ended up winning the Golden Boot as top scorer in the competition! Watch his video below!
As a result of his performance and right attitude to embrace challenges, we recommended Onix to one of the best youth development academies in Argentina, Club Atlético Banfield. Atlético has developed Real Madrid and Columbian star, James Rodriguez (featured right).
Atletico Liked what they saw and have offered Onix the opportunity to play and train at their academy in Buenos Aires for free for the next two years.
He now lives and studies in Buenos Aires. We have no idea what the future holds for Onix. What we do know is that whether he turns out to be a professional player or be the first in his family to go to college, the opportunity afforded to Onix will change his life forever.
How many more gems like Onix (forgive the pun) are out there? Would you Donate $1 to the Next Gen Foundation to help us uncover these diamonds? These players who have great potential from under served communities who have the talent but who do not have the necessary means to develop it? Click here for your donation.
With your donation, like we did for Onix, this summer we will be able to invite and give scholarships. These scholarships will go to players from under served communities to attend one of our International Development Festivals (IDFs). Based on feedback and discussions with the international pro-club coaches who have attended the IDFs, we will give scholarships to some of these players for further development opportunities abroad. Click the picture below for your donation.