"I was born to love football, if I just saw a soccer ball, I wanted to kick it in. My dad told me that since I was little, I was just saying 'goal, goal!'"
This is how Alexander Callens describes his football beginnings growing in Callao, Peru. It is now a full Peruvian international and NYCFC is the fourth Callens club on three continents.
Callens began her career in her hometown with the Sport Boys Association of Callao, also known as Los Rosados . After spending years in the youth team, Callens made his debut with the club on April 18, 2010 at age 17.
Callao fue fundada por los colonos españoles en 1537, convirtiéndose en una importante ciudad portuaria. Hoy, alberga a casi un millón de personas, la Universidad Nacional del Callao, y dos equipos profesionales de fútbol: Sport Boys y Atletico Chalaco. Los habitantes del Callao se llaman chalacos.
Callens no es el único futbolista peruano de Callao. Claudio Pizarro, apodado el "bombardero andino" por Gerd Muller, proviene de la ciudad. Pizarro, ahora del Werder Bremen, ha hecho más de 200 apariciones para el Bayern Munich y marcó 199 goles en la Bundesliga.
Allianza Lima and Universitario are the biggest clubs of Peruvian football, winning 22 and 26 national league titles, respectively. Both have represented Peru in the Copa Libertadores on multiple occasions, with Allianza making 24 appearances.
The national team of Peru is very well! They are ranked 15th in the world by FIFA. In its history, Peru has competed in 29 Americas Cups and four World Cups. They also made an appearance at the CONCACAF Gold Cup in 2000 as a guest nation!
Join Alexaner Callens and the rest of the team on Saturday, September 9 at Yankee Stadium as we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. Get your tickets down.