Berry, the 'Yankee' of adoption who dreams of returning to Spain

Of a Cuban father and an American mother, Miguel Berry (Barcelona, ​​1997) lived in Spain until age 8. He played in the lower categories of San Cugat Sport FC, where he spent “the best moments” of his life. His years in Catalonia, however, are already far away. Almost three decades have passed since he changed his residence to San Diego, in California. There, on the other side of the puddle, he continued training as a footballer until he won a contract in the Major League Soccer (MLS) After several years of success in college football, Berry was selected in the SuperDraft by Columbus Crew, with whom he ended up signing his first professional contract last February. Now everything is great. He is only 22 years old and can be considered a footballer. With capital letters, too. You will have the opportunity to succeed in American football. And it will be then when all the effort makes sense. Your path to success is not being easy.

Miguel Berry is considered Spanish “in quotes.” “We decided to move to the United States because my mother was tired of living in Barcelona. Now I live surrounded by Americans and it is impossible to maintain the lifestyle I had in Spain. I spend weeks without speaking Spanish“, confesses the number '27' of Columbus Crew. His career in college football in the United States was” very difficult. ” It was the time when Frank Rijkaard directed FC Barcelona and my coach in San Cugat del Vallés sympathized with his philosophy. I learned to play to the touch, to move, to look for spaces … But I came to the United States and here soccer until the age of 16 is absurd. They just play for fun! I have not learned anything new for years and I hope to assimilate many new concepts in Columbus, “says Berry, who had to change his style of play to succeed in American football:” Now I'm 1.90, I'm fast and I have a good stride. But it took me to mature physically. Here they don't appreciate the same things as in Spain and I had to adapt to survive. “

“The SuperDraft is pretty dumb. A player must be able to control where he is going.”

Miguel Berry

Like many other players, Miguel Berry won a professional contract through SuperDraft, an event in which MLS teams select college players. A “pretty dumb” system according to Berry. “A player must be able to control where he is going”, adds the Spaniard, who already had a contract with another MLS club before Columbus Crew chose him in the seventh pick of the first round. “It was very strange. I already had an offer on the table. I had talked to the coach, visited his facilities … I thought my future was there and, suddenly, Columbus had my rights. I told them not to choose me, that I was not going. I was crying, I called my representative 20 times in one morning. Everyone congratulated me and I thought 'nooo!', But everything changed when I talked to them. Caleb Porter, the coach, called me and told me what plans he had for me. And that helped me a lot. I understood that Columbus was the best place for me. I hope to have opportunities here, “he says.

Although he stayed out of the call on the opening day of the MLS, Miguel Berry understands that it is part of the process. “It will be very difficult to adapt, I have never played in a professional environment … But I want to, there are very good players and I'm dying to share the field with them. Lucas Zelarayán, for example, it is incredible, “Berry values ​​without neglecting the dream of returning to Spain.”There I spent the best years of my life and I would like to return. Third, Second or First. You never know, but I want to succeed in MLS and have the opportunity to live there again. Also to watch Barça matches live. I follow them but there's nothing like being at Camp Nou and singing the anthem“, says one of the eight Spanish footballers of Major League Soccer.