Making It Look Easy

By Wesley Chism Jr., BASN Staff Reporter
Updated: April 2, 2010

SEATTLE (BASN) — Steve Zakuani of the Seattle Sounders FC ended the 2009 MLS season as a finalist for the Rookie of the Year award.

He scored four goals, had four assists and played in 31 games.

“I can still remember my first goal as a professional that came against Toronto,” stated Steve. “What made that moment so special for me is that all of my teammates autographed that game ball and gave it to me, it’s something that I will cherish for the rest of my life,” he added.

The 2010 season is still early, but Steve is picking up from where he left off.

His first assist of the season resulted in a 2-0 win against the Philadelphia Union at home last week and it’s just the first of many to come.

Steve started taking Soccer seriously when he was seven years old while he was growing up in the north side of London.

He played with his friends everyday after school in the middle of street between a row of houses on hard concrete.

Becoming a professional soccer player started off as a dream of his Father’s but it eventually became Steve’s dream too.

He started playing for the Austin FC when he was 9 years old and his Father would always encourage him to imagine himself on the field playing with guys like Freddie Ljungberg.

“My dad said that he played goal keeper but when I first saw him play I wasn’t impressed and there aren’t any tapes to back up his story but my Mom says that he was pretty good so I have to take her word for it,” laughed Steve.

It became obvious when Steve was around 12 or 13 that he was a little different than some of the other kids his age and really began to stand out.

“When I first started playing soccer there were things that just seem to come naturally to me.

That remains to be true even now, “said Stevie.

People started looking at him differently too and realized what great potential that he had.

Nobody was laughing at him anymore on career day when he said that his goal was to become a professional Soccer player.

Natural, I guess that’s the best way to sum up his game.

I’ve seen Steve make some of the most incredible moves to get open that have left defenders tripping over themselves and he’s not trying to be flashy or anything, it just comes naturally.

When he’s not on the field you can find his face buried in a book.

“I love to read and spend no less than three hours each day with a book!” exclaimed Steve.

He also has a pretty eclectic music collection and spends his other down time catching up with family members back home.

Things are really looking good for Steve this year and he’s in the best shape of his life.

Due to a shoulder injury last season he spent the entire off season completely transforming his body and focused on areas of his game where he could be better.

For any young athletes that have dreams of playing pro here’s some advice from Steve Zakuani.

1. Play determined

2. Believe in your ability

3. Limit distractions

4. Understand that obstacle along your journey are normal

5. Focus on your strengths and weaknesses

6. Use your time wisely

Now that’s just good old advice no matter what you want to do in life!