Gyuwon Chong played for European Soccer Institute and is currently a player for Sporting Kansas City's U18-U19 team. He did individual training with Stéphane a few months prior to joining ESI for one season before going to Sporting Kansas City's Developmental Academy.
Training at ESI helped Gyuwon get clarity and game awareness that he hadn't had before.
"I feel more confident and more aware of what is going on around me during a game," Chong said. "I know how to better analyze the game now."
More than Soccer
In addition to helping him move toward his goal to play Major League Soccer (MLS), his ESI experience provided lessons about respect. Chong learned how to be a supportive team member and a supportive community member.
"With my ESI teammates, we helped each other grow and supported one another," Chong said. "That philosophy carried over from team to my school and into my larger community."
Advice for Staying on the Ball
Good soccer players mirror the best and Chong enjoys watching and studying Son Heung-Min for inspiration. When he thinks of ESI and how he can inspire the current players to continue toward their dreams, he recalls the supportive parents, the positive team comraderie, and the great coach.
“Stéphane knows you as a player,” Chong said. “He can relate to every situation and then he will teach you like he is in that situation. Learn as much as you can while you are there and don't take every day of training for granted.”
Chong sees himself becoming a professional player. He is focused on that path - going whatever route life takes him. While making his way to his goal, he will never forget his time with ESI.
“ESI is a special place,” Chong said. "You will not learn anywhere else in the U.S. what you learn there. ESI is a place where you can grow and learn."