Chance of a lifetime: Adry Matias-Maltes signs to play soccer in Germany
Published 11:10 am Saturday, June 10, 2023
LaGrange High School soccer player Adry Alexandria Matias-Maltes is getting a big international opportunity. Matias-Maltes signed on Friday with Bundesliga Fussball/soccer team SV Elversberg 07 and will leave LaGrange to try her hand with and against some of the best young international talents in the world of women’s soccer halfway across the globe.
“I am extremely nervous and a little sad, but I’m also excited to play for this team,” Matias-Maltes said. “I am motivated to try and work my way up with this team.”
Never the biggest player on any soccer pitch she walked out onto, Matias-Maltes’ soccer journey was questioned every step of the way. There will be questions if she is big and strong enough to play with SV Elversberg 07 second team and whether she will ever be ready for first-team soccer at that level. She does not care what others have said, she has always stayed laser focused on achieving her goal of playing competitive soccer at the highest level she could obtain.
“I earned this spot,” Matias-Maltes said. “It didn’t matter if some people told me I was too small or didn’t believe in me. I showed them I can do it.”
Deciding to pack up her life and move to Germany was anything but an easy decision. Matias-Maltes lost countless hours of sleep deciding whether she really could leave her “normal” behind. With some prayer and thought, she believes she is making the best decision for her future even if it does leave a bittersweet taste in her mouth.
The 16-year old will depart from Troup County on July 1st to start her new adventure. She will be in Germany for a minimum of one year with a chance to extend her stay or come home after a year which leaves her options open.
During her time playing soccer in LaGrange, Matias-Maltes also excelled on her club team SSA LaGrange. In fact, it was through her experiences with SSA LaGrange that this opportunity in Germany presented itself.
“Last year we went on vacation in Germany and took some of these teenage girls with us just so they could see what it was like to experience playing overseas, and we had no intent on anything else,” said Patrick Potts, SSA LaGrange coach. “The coaches from SV Elversberg 07 picked her out and said she had a standing invite and if she wanted to return there was an open door anytime.”
This opportunity caught Matias-Maltes off guard at first. “I was surprised and speechless. I didn’t think I was good enough until I got a spot on the team, and they told me I could be a part of their team next season.”
Matias-Maltes is an extremely talented individual despite her perceived lack of size. Potts is glad that SV Elversberg 07 saw all the traits in her that he does.
“She has talent, a soccer background and extremely strong fundamentals,” Potts said. “This will give her a great opportunity to help build her soccer skills so that she can go down any path she decides to go down whether that is college, professional or something else.”
While she is a bundle of nerves as the day of her departure edged ever closer, she is also full of excitement to play with her teammates and learn German so that she will be trilingual (English and Spanish).
With just a few weeks left before her temporary goodbye to the area, it is still sinking in for Matias-Maltes, but she will carry her memories of playing soccer in LaGrange wherever her athletic career takes her.
“I’m going to remember playing here forever,” Matias-Maltes said. “I had one of my best seasons last year, and I want to build on it as I head over to Germany.”