Miguel Ángel Morro sports Rayo Vallecano’s colours: ‘If football doesn’t make you happy, progress is impossible’.

He makes himself known as a goalkeeper with “a lot of character”, that shines “in difficult matches and complicated scenarios”. At 1.93m (6’3”) tall, Miguel Ángel Morro is built to reach the stars. So far, he looks like he’s on the right track, having earned himself Rayo Vallecano’s under-19s armband and has been playing with their main team in a friendly game against Bristol City FC. Somewhat of an impressive scene for a keeper that started practicing in the living room of his home and first stepped into Marcet at twelve years of age.

Question.- What kind of goalkeeper are you?

Answer.- I’m a keeper that plays better than he trains. I’m good in the air and usually placed quite far forward, helping the defence.

Q.- When did you first show an interest for football?

A.- I started kicking a ball around as soon as I was on my feet, at about two. My family always had football on TV and there wasn’t a room in my house that didn’t have a football in it.

Q.- Why did you become a goalkeeper?

A.- It all started at my living room door. I can remember my dad and my grandad throwing a ball at me and I’d spend the whole day playing with them, seeing how many balls I could stop… As soon as he saw how much I liked it, he signed me up to the local neighbourhood team. It’s now been 13 years since I’ve been a goalkeeper.

Q.- How different is it being a goalkeeper to playing further up the pitch?

A.– I’ve always asked myself: “What must scoring a goal feel like?” That much I can’t say, but I can tell you that to be a keeper you need to have a special gift, something different. That little bit of a bad temper, that little bit of bravery that puts you under the three bars… Only a lucky few can enjoy that madness. The goalkeeper is the fundamental pilar of a team, the player with the most responsibility and that suffers the most pressure. Always the first to be criticised.

Q.- When and why did you come to Marcet?

A.- I first got involved when I was 12 years old, in Madrid. I came back the next three summers and when I hit 15, I made the move to their Headquarters in Barcelona. A lot of people had recommended I go to Marcet because of the level their players acquired after coursing their programmes. My goal was to have a good time, enjoy the football and, above all, improve my game with the help of great goalkeeper trainers.

Q.- What was your first impression on arrival?

A.- When I first got here I wasn’t quite sure what to do, simply because they treat you and take care of you as if you were a professional, something you can be really be grateful for. I think that Marcet has an incredible work ethic and method, both concerning football and personal education. They train you to be a genuine professional. The programmes are made to make the best and most of what you can do in a great work environment where companionship is a plenty. It’s also fantastic how they work with people with regard to their psychology, companionship, objectives, with such respect and their famous three ‘H’s’ [Humility, Humanity, Honesty]. Something that really surprised me is that at Marcet, they don’t mess around. They’ll make very clear that the path to professional football is very, very hard. That said, they’re always there to help make that dream we’ve all always had come true.

Q.- How did you make your way to Rayo Vallecano?

A.- I was playing for RSD Alcalá when I knew an important team had their eyes on me. A week before the end of the season I got a call from my good friend and rep. Luis Miguel Manzano, letting me know that Rayo wanted to see me. I went to the trial and from then on I was part of their plan.

Q.- Could you have imagined that a few years earlier?

A.- Yes, I’d been working hard at it and sacrificing a lot for it to happen. I knew that, if I gave it everything I had, sooner or later I’d sign on to a big team. It was a matter of patience and knowing how to make the most of the opportunities I would come across.

Miguel Ángel Morro blocks an aerial ball during a training session with Rayo Vallecano.

Q.- How does it feel to be training with the main team?

A.- I’d only been given a heads up a day before my first practice with them because a keeper had just been injured. To be honest, I felt really good about it, I’d never experienced anything like it. Training alongside some of the best means learning from them and listening to everything they have to say.

Q.- Why come back to Marcet now that you’re part of a big team?

A.- To go back to the club fit and feeling good about the pre-season. A course like Desafío Barcelona is just what I need to not slow down and stop during the summer. Coming back to Marcet has almost become routine to me seen as every year I seem to leave happier with the experience. Having a good time and enjoying yourself is a big part of it, because if this whole football thing doesn’t make you happy, progress is going to be impossible.

Q.- What are your mid-term and long-term goals?

A.- For the time being, I’m going to stay in Rayo and work hard for the years to come towards first division, a dream I’ve had since I was very little. I know that if I give it everything I have, I’ll make it happen.

 

 

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