Updated: Oct 19, 2021

Listen, when I first heard about the Coronavirus, I did not believe it really happened, and like a lot of us I didn’t think it would hit Europe like it did. For me, it really destroyed my plans of playing football abroad. I had signed with the best team in Germany and in Europe, the New Yorker Lions (Braunschweig). I flew over there as planned, but I only stayed for a week and was sent home before the quarantine started throughout the country.

After a few months back home, the New Yorker Lions officially announced that they would not play this season in the German Football League 2020, there are still too many restrictions in the country and it does not feel safe for everyone involved to play football this year. I always knew that there would be a season in Sweden because the corona situation was a lot better here. We had no quarantines and less restrictions. So my plan was all along, if the GFL was going to be cancelled I knew I would be playing in Sweden. And that is what happened.

I am of course sad that there was no GFL this year but at the same time I am very happy that I still get to play football and being back with the Black Knights family feels good! I am excited to be playing in Sweden again and especially at our home field Behrn Arena where I missed playing at. This year's team, we have some younger players who can finally play with the men’s team, we have some comebacks and some completely new players from other teams. We are starting to become more and more confident with every practice and I know everyone will fight hard to win games, play great football and hopefully we will be back in the championship game!

When I first step on the field I will probably be a bit nervous, in a good way, only because it has been over a year since I played football now. But always after the first hit everything feels much better and when the adrenaline kicks in, I know I will have fun the guys doing what we love.

Being one of the few countries in the world playing football this year, I know more people than usual wants to see Sweden has to offer. We got some Swedish talent returning home to play because of football being cancelled all over the world. There is also a lot of international players that wants to play football anywhere, so they have chosen to play in the top league in Sweden. This will be exciting and a special year with guys playing where they normally would not. That is something to look forward to.

I would like to thank Jamal Clay at the Athletes Forum for reaching out to me and giving me this opportunity to share my experience.

If you want to see more about me and my football journey, you can follow me on Instagram (@babbbben)

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