A university student with no prior football experience has been signed by a professional Czech club, and astonishingly, he is set to become the team captain. This unexpected turn of events was made possible by a generous donation of 500,000 Koruna ($21,700) from the student’s father.
Martin Podhajsky, a 22-year-old law student, has been recruited by FK Usti nad Labem, a third-tier club in the Czech Republic. Despite his lack of on-field football skills, Podhajsky is more familiar with playing FIFA video games than the real sport.
This transfer has been dubbed “the weirdest transfer ever,” leaving players and fans in shock as Podhajsky replaces the current captain of the club’s third team, Jakub Mares. To solidify his position, Podhajsky has even registered with the Czech Republic’s Football Association.
Before making his debut, which is expected to be a mere ten minutes, Podhajsky will participate in the team’s training sessions to familiarize himself with the sport.
Club chairman Premysl Kuban expressed his rationale behind this unconventional decision, stating, “He doesn’t play football – only FIFA on the computer. However, it’s not every day that I see 500,000 Czech Koruna lying around. If someone offers that kind of money, I’ll let anyone join.”
Kuban further revealed that Podhajsky himself expressed a desire to play, and the situation gained momentum when his father intervened with the significant donation.
In response to the signing, the club took to Instagram and proclaimed, “We will lead 3-0, we will put him in the attack for ten minutes, he will replace Mares.”
Looking ahead, Kuban outlined the plan for Podhajsky, mentioning that he is scheduled to start training in the fall. The chairman also highlighted the upcoming spring season, where the team will play seven consecutive home games, anticipating Podhajsky to have a tangible impact on the matches.
Although the signing has raised eyebrows, local media reports indicate that many fans are thrilled for Podhajsky. Over 800 supporters have hailed his arrival and his father’s contribution as a “win-win situation” for the club.
Notably, Podhajsky is currently employed at Viagem, a real estate company owned by the club’s president, Kuban.