Massive congratulations to GU15 Elite player Batya Bagully who will travel from sunny San Diego to Kazakhstan (Eastern Europe) on April 10th to train with the Kazakhstan U16 national team. Batya will then travel with the team to Macedonia for a UEFA sanctioned tournament against other European nations.
Batya was adopted as a baby from Kazakhstan at 10 months old and has played for our club since she was 8 years old. Recently, she had been contacted by the head of Kazakh Soccer after a friend of the families (who works at UEFA, in Geneva) let them know he had a youth player training in California who qualified for the team by birth.
After months of numerous emails and forwarding of footage, the Kazakhstan Soccer Federation sent Batya a formal invitation to join the U16 national team for training in Shymkent, Kazakhstan at the Biik stadium. Batya will live and train with the team in preparation for a UEFA sanctioned tournament with teams such as the Ukraine, Lithuania, and Macedonia.
Batya had this to say about what lies ahead, “I am excited and honored to be playing for my birth country, even if a little nervous. I hope to be able to help the team and make my birth country, my family and my club proud.”
LA Galaxy San Diego Director of Girls, Carl Higham, commented, “What an absolutely fantastic story and amazing opportunity for Batya to get the chance to play for her country of birth, Kazakhstan. It is going to be exciting for us to follow her progress as she matches up against other top European nations. Batya is a forward thinking player so we are hoping she can create lots of chances for the Kazakstan team and maybe even get on the scoresheet herself.”
Batya also appeared on Fox 5 News this evening (03/18/16). Please use the link below to watch the piece with cameos from Director Michael Duggan and Coach Daniel McKell.