The journey of A-League starboy Yoshi

He may only be 10 years old, but Yoshi could be a revolution for the A-League.

Initially, the A-League’s advertising campaign ‘You’ve gotta have a team’ looked set for an embarrassing fail. Not even the face of Socceroo legend Tim Cahill could save the campaign from the viral Twitter meme onslaught that was about to come.

Then along came Yoshi.

Whether the late timing of Yoshi’s appearance was a deliberate move by the FFA remains to be seen, but it has worked wonders for the A-League’s exposure to the ‘neutral fan’.

The FFA’s new campaign for the A-League features Yoshi. He’s just one of 2.18 million Australian kids who play football. Did you know that less than just half of those kids under 15 support an A-League team?

With the help of every A-League club, Yoshi has journeyed across the country in search of ‘his team’. He has been given the opportunity to chill with some of Australia’s biggest footballers.

Yoshi spoke to THE TURF about his experience so far.

“I think it’s been an amazing experience that i’ll remember until I’m old,” said Yoshi. 

Yoshi has clearly been inspired after meeting the stars of the A-League, and one day wishes to play on the big stage. The left winger plays junior football and it’s no surprise his favourite player is Barcelona winger Neymar.

“That would be my dream job really, but if i didn’t get into actually playing I would still do something to do with football.” 

“The football player who inspired me is Neymar. The way he plays is really cool. It was weird because he turned out being one of my favourite players by chance. I was trying to find a Messi shirt and there was only Neymar, so I didn’t actually know who he was. I watched a game and I was like wow.” 


SYDNEY DERBY

Yoshi had the opportunity to witness the famous Sydney derby between Sydney F.C and Western Sydney Wanderers. The first round clash saw 61,880 people walk through the gates, breaking the record for the highest ever A-League crowd attendance.

“The atmosphere was amazing at the game. I actually got to go to the cove, it was a really good game,” said Yoshi. 

Yoshi traveled down to Melbourne this week in preparation for this weekend’s Melbourne Derby between Melbourne Victory & Melbourne City.

“Watching the games is going to help my decision. It’s going to be more based on the fans, how they play, how they make goals and how they make opportunities.” 

ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 12: Hyundai A-League Competition winner Yoshi meets with Adelaide United players on September 12, 2016 in Adelaide, Australia. (Photo by Daniel Kalisz/Getty Images)
ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA – SEPTEMBER 12: Hyundai A-League Competition winner Yoshi meets with Adelaide United players on September 12, 2016 in Adelaide, Australia. (Photo by Daniel Kalisz/Getty Images)
Ari Charilaou