Luis Miravitlles went to Marcet to improve his technique and earn himself a sports scholarship for an American university.
Football can open many doors. Inside and outside the world of sport. Investing in football training does not necessarily mean putting all of your eggs in one basket, but opening up your field of view to a wide range of personal and professional development opportunities. Luis Miravitlles de Castro is proof of just that. Born on April 1, 1999 here in Barcelona, he entered Marcet’s High-Performance Academy in 2015 with a specific goal: to kick-start his university career in the US. Today he studies in Pennsylvania and is a defender at Mount Aloysius College Soccer.
Q.- How did you come up with the idea of using football to access the American university system?
R.- At the beginning of 2015 I saw an ad by AGM. They actually gave a lecture at Marcet on this subject. I checked in and left feeling very convinced and confident about the whole thing. The US option caught my interest because it allowed me to combine football and studies, something that in Spain I find complicated.
Q.- Was your goal more academic or football orientated?
R.- Both. I knew that if I wanted to continue with football in Spain it would complicate my career. On top of that, I found the idea of studying in an English-speaking university valuable. So that’s pretty much how I ended up at Mount Aloysius College.
Q.- How was the process? Complicated?
R.- More long than complicated. Basically, you send a video CV so that technicians from several American universities can assess your player profile. The footage has to reflect your technical and strategical ability and that’s pretty much the key to the whole thing. From there the universities that are interested in your profile start sending you proposals. I received several and decided on the one that seemed like the best fit for me. Of course, before formalizing the registration you need to pass a couple of English and maths tests
Q.- What conditions were you offered?
R.- Education in the US is expensive. I needed a scholarship. The one I got covers more than 50% of the expenses, both academic and housing, living costs, etc.
Q.- What do you mean when you say that in the USA football and academics are more compatible?
R.- Sport is highly valued in American universities. In the US, they understand that football training doesn’t take anything away from academia. Conversely, if an exam coincides with a match day, it’s completely normal for teachers to allow you to postpone the test. They are very understanding about this issue and don’t see any problems in adapting the academic calendar to your sports schedule.
Q.- How important was the football training you received here to then enrolling at Mount Aloysius College?
R.- It was key. In 2015 I was in a low-middle-class club, but I knew that to fulfil my dream of studying in the US I had to play in a more serious and professional team. That’s why that year I started going to Marcet’s Easter holidays intensive courses. I then saw the kind of work they were doing in the High-Performance Academy. I felt very comfortable from the get-go. I saw that there were students from all over the world who were achieving impressive results. My general impression was very positive. I had the opportunity to do a tour where we went to Madrid and Portugal. There I was able to play up against first-class teams. It was a spectacular experience. So I decided to sign up to the intensive summer course and then to the Professional Program.
Q.- What did you improve during your time at Marcet?
R.- Everything. The progress I made was great. Before arriving I was very nervous with the ball and my technique wasn’t the best. I was fast and tough, but it didn’t stand out. As soon as I entered Marcet they made it very clear to me that I had to improve my technique, that football is a sport of touch and tact. In two years I improved a lot and it’s all down to the rivals you’re put up against, the coaches, the learning methodology, the sports psychology… They taught me a lot and I ended up making serious progress in technique, strategy, speed, positioning, game vision… In everything.