A team with a very modest name, ‘MakeShift FC’ came into this year’s Gold Cup with an uncompromising belief in themselves. Playing in a tough division with only 7 players and no substitutes, MakeShift’s story is one of triumph and camaraderie; a story that pits ‘team’ above ‘individual’ in a marvelous journey towards glory.
Being crowned as the eventual winners of the U13 category, Green Sports would like to salute MakeShift FC on a valiant victory, and recognize them as 2017 Gold Cup Champions.
Moreover, considering the team’s recent success, Green Sports sat down with Jeremy Ogango, one of the MakeShift’s standout players from the past tournament and asked him some insightful questions. Here’s how the interview went:
GS: Green Sports
JO: Jeremy Ogango
GS: Who are MakeShift FC, how were you formed, and what does your team name mean?
JO: Gold Cup last year, one of the Green Sports officials suggested the name MakeShift to us. It doesn’t have any meaning because we just made it on the spot. We just made it because we didn’t have a team name.
We all played together in the same club for a long time through younger age groups. Some of us split up, but I got us back together for the Green Sports tournament.”
GS: How did you find out about Gold Cup and Green Sports Africa?
JO: 2015, we were coming back from another tournament and a friend had told me about the Green Sports tournament, but I never knew about it. My friend and his team played in the 2015 Gold Cup and reached the semi-finals. We also decided to start a team and we first played in AstroTurf Challenge IV (2016).
GS: Being Gold Cup winners, what do you believe made your team stronger than all the other teams on the day?
JO: Our communication was good. And though the other teams were also really good, we’ve played together for a long time. We knew our weaknesses and we help each other when we make mistakes. We also train together so we gel together.
There was only one of us who was new to the team. We were 6 players when we registered, but we managed to get another player. That meant we were 7 players with no subs.
GS: What was the hardest challenge you had to overcome during the tournament?
JO: This tournament wasn’t as hard as Gold Cup last year. We communicated well, played together and we scored goals, that why we won.”
We had many challenges though. Especially, not having subs and getting tired, but we just had to work with that because we couldn’t do anything about it. We got through it with our stamina levels, which were high because we had been practicing for a good 4 months.
GS: What was your favorite memory of that tournament?
JO: Winning for the team! And also scoring two goals in the final. Those were my greatest moments… it was really good for us.
GS: What did you do with the 50,000 Prize money you won?
JO: I’m not sure what the others did but we already divided it. I plan to save it for the next Green Sports tournament because you can’t always win. Next time I don’t have to keep asking for my mum to pay for my registration, so I’ll keep some of it to pay my registration fee for the next tournament.
GS: Who would you say was your best player at the tournament?
JO: *laughs* Andre played really well for us and he did a good job in the midfield. Some of our players had gone to play with Kenya U13’s so Andre had to play in the midfield. He’s usually a striker but we asked him to play there. He did well.
GS: What are your personal plans through football? Is this a possible career for you?
JO: I want to become a professional footballer but yeah, it is a lot of work. That’s why I train five times a week. There are so many challenges when you want to become a professional footballer that you have to consider.
GS: What is your vision for the team in the next few years?
JO: It’s not easy for you to stay together because someone can come from another team and take your player and then you have to replace him. So, for me, right now I want us to stay together. But I don’t think it’s going to be possible when another team can come and take our striker for example, then we have to replace him.
A boy with wisdom way beyond his years Jeremy Ogango’s testimony should go to show that teams truly win Gold Cups, and not just talent alone.
Once again, thank you to MakeShift FC and as they prepare for the next tournament, we wish them well.
For all other teams who believe they can, show us why you’re better than MakeShift FC in the next Green Sports Tournament and you will be featured across our social media platforms.