Arsenal have made their former striker Danny Karbassiyoon the club's chief scout for North America.
Karbassiyoon signed for Arsenal after impressing at the 2003 adidas ESP camp. He eventually played a handful of first-team games with the Gunners, and later on loan and under contract with lower division clubs Ipswich and Burnley before knee injuries ended his career prematurely.
"I always told my friends and family that I wanted to be a professional soccer player. I didn't know how I was going to get there but I was determined I was going to be a professional. I even went on my college visit to Duke and told the coaches I wanted to be a pro," he told Top Drawer Soccer. "When Arsenal came in and I did well on my trial, I just knew it was my opportunity to be what I wanted to be.
"It was a great decision. It's opened so many doors. Just getting to play with the 1st team and training with Thierry Henry and players like that was something I will never forget," he continued. "To put the jersey on was a dream come true. Something like that wouldn't' have happened if I'd gone to college and gotten injured there."
Karbassiyoon has parlayed his experience into a new soccer-related career. Arsenal have made him their chief scout for North America and he has been criss-crossing the continent to watch players and report to the home office in London.
"I'm basically their eyes and ears in this part of the world. I tell them or if they hear about a certain player from somewhere else, I go look at them," he said. " I know a lot of people here and there already through my experiences. Even though I'm so young, I'm pretty well connected, so I have a lot of leads to follow."