It didn’t faze Eloiza Fagsao that her team had no balls, shoes or even a football coach when they first started. The student-athlete is no stranger to hardship; juggling the rigors of training with studies, chores and helping her parents out at their multiple jobs.

What drives you to score in life?

Hard work has always been a part of my philosophy. My parents work multiple jobs — sidewalk vendor, janitor, farmer — to provide for my sister and me. So most of the time, we’d go help them out right after our training. I’ve chosen to embrace adversity and hardship because of the values I learn in striving for success.

How challenging is it being a student-athlete?

My training with the UP Women's Football Team is all about commitment, discipline and responsibilities. Our training starts at 6am, and sometimes we’d get up at 4am to get to McKinley Hill. Right after training, everyone has to get ready for class. Sometimes I’d have zero sleep trying to finish all my papers so I can pass them on time. Going with no sleep, I have to make sure that I still perform well and contribute to the team.

What are your dreams for the future of women’s football?

I hope it gets the same kind of support and awareness as other sports in the Philippines. Here, football isn't really recognized, especially women’s. I wish people would have a broader and deeper knowledge about football, about how players prepare for competitions as well as their struggles and needs​. I also wish that athletes could be given equal importance when it comes to training, facilities, nutrition, physical and mental conditioning.


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