How do you do better than your father when you’re a footballer and he won a Ballon d’Or? American striker Timothy Weah found the solution by scoring a World Cup goal, which his illustrious father George never had the opportunity to achieve. Tuesday, November 29, after the match won by the Americans against Iran (1-0), we saw in the corridors of Al-Thumama stadium the son fall into the arms of the father, current president of Liberia, present in Qatar for the World Cup.
The young United States team, in which Timothy Weah has been a starter since the start of the tournament, had just qualified for the round of 16 of the tournament, where they will face the Netherlands on Saturday. A huge striker, notably at AC Milan and Paris Saint-Germain, George Weah won the 1995 Ballon d’Or but was never able to qualify Liberia for the World Cup.
Born and trained in New York until his departure for Europe shortly before his 15th birthday, Timothy Weah has always evolved with the United States, since the U15 selection. At 22, he made a successful start to the season with Lille and appears more and more regularly in Ligue 1. This allowed him to start the World Cup in the shoes of a holder with the “Team USA” and scoring his side’s first goal in Qatar, in the 1-1 draw with Wales.
Go even higher
“It’s a great feeling. I think my father lives this moment through me. I’m very happy to have scored this goal for my family and to have been able to help the team.”, he said then. Twelve years ago, “Tim” Weah was a 10-year-old child, invited with his father to attend the 2010 World Cup final and Spain’s crowning of Xavi and Iniesta.
“Just seeing that, watching all my favorite players on the pitch, it was a dream come true”he told AFP in Doha, shortly before the start of the tournament. “So finding myself today in this position is crazy, almost unreal. I guess sometimes, in our situation, we don’t realize how lucky we are. To be here is an incredible feeling”he added.
But while, for once, he has already climbed higher than his father, the American striker has the ambition to go even higher alongside the dynamic US selection which, despite his lack of experience, does not can’t imagine beaten in advance against the Dutch. “I think in today’s football, age is just a number. Some of the best players in the world aren’t even 24.”he judged.
“Even though we are young, we are not an immature group at all. We are a group of guys who know what they want. Individually, we each have our experiences and when we get together, each brings their own level of maturity to the team.he added.
This maturity, he showed again after the match against Iran, by paying tribute on Instagram to the “Team Meli”. “It has always been more than football for me and I just wanted to salute this wonderful team, who have shown so much pride and love for their country and their people. Huge respect”, he wrote. Scorer and leader, the young Weah has something to hold on to.
To not miss any African news, subscribe to the newsletter of the “World Africa” from this link. Every Saturday at 6 a.m., find a week of news and debates covered by the editorial staff of the “World Africa”.
Source: Le Monde