Player To Watch: Joe DiCarlo Chases His Dream of Playing in Europe
Many players dream of making a trip to Europe in order to put their skills to the test against some of the top competition in the world. Traveling across the Atlantic to chase your dream will without a doubt put your physical stature to the test, but the mental aspects should never go unnoticed.
Southern California native Joe DiCarlo returns home from his two-month stint in Europe that saw him travel from England to Italy, and then to Germany in order to accomplish his dream of professional soccer.
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Soccer News: Former Murrieta Surf SC standout Joe DiCarlo has been chasing his dream of becoming a professional soccer player in Europe.
DiCarlo originally began his journey with English soccer club Sheffield Wednesday FC at the beginning of the year, but suffered a dislocated shoulder that required him to return to the U.S. for surgery. After working his way back to being game-fit, the 18-year-old returned to England in August to continue right where he left off.
Upon his arrival back to the U.K., DiCarlo trained with Sheffield United for two weeks before receiving a call from his immigration lawyer who stated that his citizenship could not be accelerated until November of 2017 if he received an offer.
Upon discussions with his former Murrieta Surf coach Steve Myles and his lawyer, DiCarlo decided to head down to Italy in order to retrace his ancestral background with the hopes of accelerating his citizenship.
He found himself in a little village near Bari speaking with the mayor in order to contact his long-lost family that was still located in the country.
Although the ability to have his citizenship accelerated could not be resolved, he still remains optimistic after getting to meet family he never knew.
“I was really happy I got to meet them because before that we didn’t even know they existed,” said DiCarlo.
Following his adventure to Italy, DiCarlo continued his quest to find a team that fits in Europe. He got in contact with a German youth player he met when his former club TVSA Hawks hosted the team a few years back.
A little over a month ago, he traveled to Östringen, Germany, to reunite with his old soccer friend who was able to pull some strings in order to get him a trial at his club.
The local squad, FC Östringen, currently plays in the sixth division in Germany. The club offered him a contract in prior weeks, but after thinking it over Dicarlo and Myles decided the contract was not right. DiCarlo has now returned to California in order to determine his next move.
DiCarlo explains that the whole process has been a journey that has allowed for him to grow independently and truly realize the amount of support he has.
“I wouldn’t have been able to do any of this without Steve,” said DiCarlo. “There is no way you could go from the club level in the U.S. to the professional level in England without knowing what you’re going to get into.”
He praises Myles for guiding him during this process and helping to prepare him mentally for what he was to expect in terms of playing standards.
“He was really good at helping me prepare mentally for what I was getting myself into because you can’t even understand what’s going to happen once you get there. It’s just on another level,” said DiCarlo.
In regard to his parents, he remains thankful for the support his parents have had throughout this process.
“When they first heard they were extremely open-minded about the whole thing because they have seen Steve coach me and how well we work together,” said Dicarlo.
He explains that his parents recognized the effort he was putting in as he began to train every day and trusted his dedication to reaching his goal.
“They have really always been supportive of anything I do as long as I go my hardest,” said Dicarlo.
With Dicarlo’s journey still yet to be written, the experience he has gained throughout his travels will be something that he will always remember.
“Regardless of what happens it will be an experience that he will never forget,” said Myles.
With the amount of support DiCarlo has from Myles and his parents, the future remains bright for a player that is willing to embrace the heavy weights on his shoulders. He is thankful for those who have pushed him to where he is at now, but understands the work he puts in on his own will ultimately make the difference.
“Steve can guide me, my parents can encourage me, but I have learned that everything I do is down to me,” said DiCarlo.