What does one of the world’s most talented teenage soccer players, with a global pedigree, do when he’s visiting New York City? He takes over a local pickup game, of course.
Tim Weah — the son of Liberia and Paris St. Germain legend George Weah — is fresh off making his debut with the U.S. men’s national team in March and then following it up in a friendly match against Bolivia. He didn’t just get on the pitch and run around a bit, either; Weah scored in the Americans’ 3-0 rout, capping off an excellent season with both club and country.
The striker played in just three matches with French Ligue 1 champion PSG’s first team, though he also competed for the club’s PSG II squad, where he notched a pair of goals in 12 matches. He’s an excellent prospect, and certainly better than anyone who just comes off the street to play an occasional pickup soccer match.
That’s what made the sight of Weah on a soccer pitch on New York City’s Pier 40 in Hudson River Park so odd on Wednesday night, where Weah was seen playing with and then mugging alongside random American soccer players. According to Sports Illustrated he was invited to fill in for a missing player on a team that includes one if its own staffers and took the group up on its offer.
And while Weah reportedly showed up to play long before the scheduled 8:40 men’s league match took place, he still insisted on fulfilling his part of the bargain and playing as part of that team, too.
Yes, Weah was the best player there. Yes, it gave the team an unfair advantage, which was obviously against the rules of the men’s league. And yes, Weah thoroughly enjoyed himself.
All of which underscores how much fun it is to have an 18-year-old budding superstar soccer forward who is down to earth enough to seek out and play in a random parks game. The Timothy Weah era should be a whole lot of fun.