Axel Ljungqist from Denmark would love to go to Samoa for the Pacific Games, but he would need your help.
Axel is a 22-year-old from Denmark and in his own words an “amateur sports journalist”. He loves football and small nations.
However, Axel is not like everyone else, as he writes on his GoFundMe page:
“I am diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder and am unable to work a full-time job. My money are scarce and I am prioritizing buying groceries and paying bills instead of saving money because the amount I get from the state barely covers the costs.
[…] I battled through 1 year of high school and the teachers were very understanding and let me pass with 40% absence. I needed to stop after the 1 year because of my health.
I find motivation and energy in national team football and the Pacific region of Oceania.
I am working 8 hours a week in a local gardener job meant for people like me with low working ability and also different people with different deficits.
Since the time zone in Denmark is very different from Oceania if I know there will be a morning game it can get me up in the morning so I can get to work even when I feel depressed.
[…] It would mean the world to me to be able to share my passion for the game with like-minded individuals and finally go on vacation again.“”
To make the trip to Samoa he would need to raise 20 000 Danish Kroner (roughly US$3000, £2300, €2700 or NZ$4400) to cover travel and stay.
In order to try to help with that, he started the GoFundMe page.
Interest in Oceania thanks to video games
“I think my interest for Oceanian football started all the way back in 2010 when the EA Sports released the 2010 World Cup game,” Axel tells Football in Oceania.
“When you were in kick-off mode you could move a cursor all around the globe and click on every national team that popped up. I found it very intriguing and mystical that those small islands all the way out in the Pacific Ocean had their own national teams. From there Oceanian football has been an interest especially in the last couple of years.”
Axel says he has wanted to go to the Oceania region for a long time.
“I think the islands and the nature looks incredible. Furthermore, the Pacific Islanders have a completely different but very strong and united culture,” he says.
“An honor and a wonderful experience”
The 22-year-old has a passion for the beautiful game and a good underdog tale.
“Of course the main reason to go there now is because of the Pacific Games. I have had great experiences following and being an advocate of the UEFA Nations League and especially the low ranked League D, commentating several matches with teams like San Marino, Andorra, Luxembourg and many more.
“It would be an honor and a wonderful experience as an advocate and passionate follower of Oceanian football to be able to cover the football tournament and interview all the passionate players and coaches of the national teams.”
If he can raise the money to go to Samoa, he hopes he can report on more sports than just football.
“The plan for me is to stay there for two weeks and watch both the opening and closing ceremony so there will be a lot of sports and athletics to follow. It would be great to cover other events than the football but I would have to look into what specifically that would be. Anywhere there is a great story I will pursue it.”
If he can’t raise the money this time around, he aims to use the money he does get to go to the 2020 OFC Nations Cup.
Football in Oceania wishes Axel all the best in getting to Samoa. We hope you achieve your goal!