Young Indian Footballer Vedaant Nag signs for Austrian club USK Maximarkt Anif
The 24-year-old Delhi boy last month signed for Austian third division side USK Maximarkt Anif. Scroll below to read his story.
We all have dreams. But in order to make dreams come into reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline, and effort. - Jesse Owens
A 24-year-old Delhi boy who dreams of playing in the top division of a European country is making strides towards his dream and believes that he will make his dream come true one day. Vedaant Nag, a 24-year-old footballer from Delhi recently signed with Austrian third division club USK Maximarkt Anif.
Vedaant, the son of a Naval officer and a school principal, was always fond of football from his school days. His dad was an avid Sportsman, but his elder brother Siddhant was the one who made him fall in love with the beautiful game. Vedaant's elder brother was a central defender, and to compliment him, he started playing as an attacker. The rivalry of siblings is more ferocious than anything, and this made him grow as a player. The football journey continued at school, and he was selected for the school team of Shri Ram School Aravali and Moulsari, his alma-mater in Gurgaon.
A few days later, he was selected for the U-13 team of Haryana and finished joint top scorer at the nationals in Jamshedpur, Jharkhand. He was a part of the team that represented India at the Youth Friendship Games in Holland, and there he was exposed to the world of European football. He met kids who played for the academies of various top-level clubs like Ajax, PSV, and Feyenoord.
"The trip exposed me to the concept of European football. I was amazed by how things happened there, and to see players from Ajax was unbelievable," said Vedaant when talking about his first International trip.
It was also the time when he met his mentor, Eric Benny, the founder of Eric Benny Sports Management company, a globally established international football academy in Delhi, India. The company has its global offices in Germany and France. Mr. Eric Benny guided him, and after his school training camps, he used to train at his football academy.
Just for amusement, he competed at the Adidas Dribble Challenge in Delhi. He was one of the fastest, and as a result, he was selected as a flag bearer at the FIFA World Cup 2010 in South Africa. Never did he know that he would be meeting his idol, Cristiano Ronaldo, at the prestigious tournament in South Africa.
When he was struggling with football and education, his parents always supported him. His dad always told him what made him happy and supported him in his football journey. Vedaant's mother, an academician, a school principal, was the stereotype breaker; she always supported him in taking up sport and playing it wholeheartedly.
"The contribution and sacrifices made by my parents are immense. I cannot thank them enough, it's because of them that I have reached wherever I am. They are my source of inspiration and always inspire me to do better," expressed Vedaant when asked about the role of his parents.
He was a part of the Delhi U-17 team at the age of fourteen, and after two years, his big moment arrived. He moved to FC Metz in France for trials and trained with their academy for two years. It was the opportunity that changed his life and made him realize what he was meant to do.
Like all Indians students, he had to answer his board exams, so he returned to India to answer the exams. After finishing the exams, he left for Europe again to complete his dreams. At the age of 19, he joined DFI- Deutschen Fußball Internat and started working towards his dreams of playing in the top division of a European country.
As time moved, his skills with the ball also improved and success came along his way. He was selected to play for the German 8th division team TUS Bad Aibling, and then jumped to the 7th Division with SC DJK DJK Kolbermoor, and within two years, he was playing for 6th division side SB Rosenheim. He was mistreated by the German side, and could not perform to the best of his potential.
But, where there is a will, there is a way. Vedaant switched to another German 6th division team SBC Traunstein at the age of 22. He was at once a part of the starting lineup and had two golden years there. He was presented with a lot of offers from the German clubs, but he had to make a decision. The Bundesliga was still a dream, but the route had to be changed.
He had an enticing offer from the 3rd division Austrian team USK Maximarkt Anif, and he gladly put pen to paper to the contract.
"My dream is to play for the top division league of a European country, and I know I will make it happen. I have worked very hard to reach here, and I don't want to stop. The league in Austria is very difficult, but I will give it my best, " added Vedaant, on how he felt signing for the Austrian club.
The journey from Delhi to Austria has not been easy for Vedaant Nag. Leaving home at a very young age to live in European countries alone has taught him to be mentally tough and focus on where he wants to reach.
It will be one of the greatest achievements for India if Vedaant goes on to play for the top-tier league of a European country.
Keep following this space for more, as we have an exclusive interview with Vedaant coming your way in the next couple of days.