What’s better? To be a good player or have one of many good soccer agents? Well the obvious answer is to have both but even great players have their struggles when not lined up with the right person driving their career.
Just so we’re clear, you could be Ronaldinho, but if you don’t have the right person standing behind you pushing your talents you’ll get lost among the crowd.
For those of you who are actively looking for an agent to jump start your pro career, I've created a list of Europe and Asia's best who have a proven track record of getting players trials. Find that list in my ebook Pro Secret Agents List.
How Do I know my agent is taking care of me?
If you feel like it’s a chore to contact your agent knowing they will either be impossible to get a hold of or it will feel like they are only telling you what you want to hear then you may have some issues.
You know they are taking care of you based on three things:
1) They are honest with you (in terms of what level they think you can play at and if they can find you something)
2) They don’t throw you into the fire (meaning setting up a trial that isn’t professionally set up)
3) If your goals aren’t being pursued or met
Should I Change Soccer Agents?
Here are some questions you should ask yourself before switching who is representing you.
-When’s the last time they contacted you non-soccer related? Just to see how things are?
-What is the time between trials that they’ve set up for you? Is it over 6 months?
-If in close proximity, when is the last time you’ve sat down and chatted with your agent?
-How long has your agent been an actual agent (FIFA Authorized)?
-Are your goals, aligned with your agents’ goals?
-Does your agent care about you? Or care about getting money from you and just talks the talk.
These are important questions you need to ask yourself to see if your agent is looking out for you and not just looking for a pay check.
I Know I Have the Quality, Why Hasn’t My Agent Found Me Anything?
Patience young Rooney, it usually takes an agent a good 6 months to a year to find you your first quality trial. By the time they know what you want, put your portfolio (CV, Highlight tape etc) together and contact teams it takes some time to get your name out there. There will be both positive and negative responses in that time and your job is to trust your agent is looking for the club and trial that is the right fit for you.
My first couple trials were not great, and I had to arrange them more or less myself. By the time I got an agent and they put my things together and contacted clubs it was a good six to seven months. I then started to get quality trials with quality teams, 1st division in Serbia, Ireland and a showcase in London.
So stay in touch with them, have patience and always be prepared, you never know when you opportunity will come. The last thing you want to happen is to give up hope, then get an email saying you have an opportunity somewhere in a handful of days and you get winded running down the stairs to tell somebody.
Keep the faith, sometimes small doors, open into large rooms.
The bottom line is you want soccer agents that find you a club. Ya it would be great if he was a stand up guy, funny, volunteer at a soup kitchen, husband of the year and kind to small animals but that’s all icing on the cake really.
You need to find an agent that is looking out for you, meaning puts you in a situation and a club that is the right fit for you. Not just feeding you to the lions den at a club that won’t pay, will treat you like crap and you’ll be miserable the entire time counting the days to go home and wishing you never picked up a soccer ball.
A good agent has your back and treats you like they would their own child by not throwing you into situations where you are set up for failure. Maybe I’m not as good as I think I Am, how to know for sure?
I once had a coach tell me, “Change that shirt it has holes in it”. It brings me luck I said. “It brings flies” he replied. No no that’s a story for a different day, he once told me “you’re as good as you think you are”.
So no matter your doubts about playing pro or succeeding at your first or seventh trial you should always be in your own corner. Never doubt your ability or give up on your aspirations because a trial hasn’t come up yet or the first couple didn’t go as smoothly as you anticipated. Lots of times people give up just before they are about to receive their big break, don’t be one of those, ride it out to the bitter end, no matter how bleak the end may seem.
Players and soccer agents need to be on the same page, don’t think you are bothering them or being annoying by telling them exactly how you feel and where you want to go.
If anything they will be inspired by your drive and direction will want to work that much harder for you to find you the perfect club.
Although quality is obviously important, soccer agents play a massive role in getting you to the next stage of your career.