Who is Murad Islamov? Only an up and coming athlete you should keep your eyes on. He’s trailblazing across the continent with his skills with the football. Hailing from New Hampshire, he has a lot to say about how to get New Zealand in the big leagues and on par with international football.
Aside from the usual advice anyone would give: hustle and hustle hard, Islamov believes that there are certain steps that you can take in order to be world renowned and he is on his way there. It is one thing to play well, it is another to be recognized. The rising star says that, “look, in a world of 8 billion, you need to know how to market yourself. Being good just isn’t enough anymore. You need to show the world that yeah you can do this and you can look good while doing it.” It’s how ambassadors score their ambassadorships and sign with big names.
Success comes with recognition, sure, and most star athletes are given major sponsorships with big brands because those brands want to be affiliated with their star power. However, stop to think about a star player and what if he didn’t project a good image? That might ruin his chances of being the first on anyone’s list when it comes to picking a brand ambassador. Big corporations and brands are similar to being in highschool. They like to be associated with squeaky clean images or the cool jock. What helps is if you have your own distinctive style, all the way down to how you handle the ball on the field.
Having been compared with soccer legend and star, Cristiano Ronaldo, is not enough for Islamov who hopes to carve out his own moves, just like on the dance floor. He says that the reason New Zealand hasn’t seen much international action is due to the fact that they play well but with no groove. Heart can give any sport or vocation a new side and draw people in.
Another factor that is preventing New Zealand from making it to the big leagues is that they might be taking it too easy. The culture of soccer is not embedded in the Kiwi way, unlike how Australians and Americans practically worship their players, New Zealand seems to be too cool in their treatment towards their players. While deferential, it still lacks passion and passion is something that you must foster in order to transform it into a force to be reckoned with.
The soccer player and social media influencer ended his discussion by saying that, “self-motivation only goes so far. What really gets me going is wanting to play in front of thousands and hearing them cheer my name. That’s what support is, and if New Zealand wants to see their soccer team go all the way, it’s time for them to stand up and cheer for their team, louder than they ever have before.”