MANILA, Philippines – For Azkals striker Misagh Bahadoran, school was his key to get into football.
The 24-year-old Filipino-Iranian said he had to prioritize his studies before he could get his father's permission to join the national team.
"They invited me to join the Philippine football team but because my fist priority was my school and college, my dad did not allow me to go," said Bahadoran.
With years of hard work in school, he earned his college degree and was finally allowed to join the Azkals.
"I just graduated as a dentist from the Centro Escolar University," said a beaming Bahadoran. "He (his father) then allowed me to play football."
Bahadoran maintained a good relationship with football ever since he was a boy.
"My brother was a very good football player. I used to play football with him so I've loved football back when I was 5, 6 years old," he said.
Now that he fulfilled his father's wishes, he's glad to fulfill his own.
"My parents are happy with what I'm doing," he said.
Name: Misagh Medina Bahadoran
Birthday: January 10, 1987
Birthplace: Mabalacat, Pampanga
Position in the Azkals team: Left/ Right wing
Start of football career: He's been playing since he was 7
Where's your mother/father from?
My mom is Kapampangan. She's a Filipino and my dad is Iranian.
What leagues have you played in?
I played for Kaya FC, after that I went to Global FC. I'm also a national futsal player since 2006 and I was 2-time top scorer of Southeast Asia. We also qualified in AFC in Japan.
What made you decide to join the team?
I wanted to try Philippine football team which before was not Azkals in 2007. They invited me to join the Philippine football team but because my fist priority was my school and college, my dad did not allow me to go. But I just graduated as a dentist from the Centro Escolar University. He then allowed me to play football. They invited me, Dan Palami, manager of Global FC, same manager of the Azkals.
What's your pet peeve? What's the thing that you hate the most?
When my dad or my parents keep on asking me 'Where are you? What are you doing? Why are you late?' I hate that.
What's the best thing you like about football?
The thing I really love about football is the challenge and the winning because when we win, I really love it. People are screaming and my parents are happy with what I'm doing.