For any soccer player, the first time representing their country at the World Cup can be a whirlwind of emotions to say the least.
England’s Bukayo Saka is one of many that graced the pitch in Qatar wearing their country’s uniform for the first time. It can be an overwhelming situation for veterans and rookies alike, with immense amounts of pressure from coaches, fans that made the trip east, and especially everyone watching back at home.
But Saka has found his own way to deal with the emotions and nerves of playing in his first World Cup: Putting faith in God.
Saka has said that he reads the Bible every night and that hasn’t changed in Qatar.
“Yeah, I’ve been continuing to do that out here with my Bible every night. For me, it’s really important to, obviously, have the presence of God in me all the time,” he told reporters in Qatar recently. “It gives me more confidence that God’s plan is perfect, so I can go on the pitch and know that God has my back. The main thing for me is just keeping the faith, having faith in God, so I don’t need to be nervous or worried about any outcomes. Obviously, it’s my first World Cup. I could start worrying about different things and different outcomes. Instead, I just choose to put my faith in God.”
WORLD CUP 2022: ENGLAND SHUTS OUT SENEGAL TO ADVANCE TO QUARTERFINALS
Relaxation through religion has worked for Saka, whose impact for England has allowed them to reach the quarterfinals.
In his very first World Cup game, the Arsenal player found the back of the net twice in the 6-2 win over Iran in Group B. First, it was in the 43rd minute when a corner kick found the head of an England player and Saka booted it toward goal with his left foot, finding the net to make it 2-0.
Then, in the second half, Saka used his left foot again to dance around Iran’s box a bit before striking it to the left side of the net for his second goal.
RAHEEM STERLING LEAVES WORLD CUP DUE TO ARMED BURGLARY AT LONDON HOME
In the Round of 16 against Senegal, a cross from Phil Foden was placed perfectly for Saka to touch with his left boot into the net.
Three goals in three matches for someone who hasn’t seen World Cup action yet in their career? Saka would say it’s all a part of God’s plan.
Read the full article here