Wednesday, April 8, 2020

The Soccer Life - Owain Fôn Williams

I don't remember how many times I was in the press room with Owain, but there was at least once where a couple of questions were asked, one by me and one by Rebecca Townsend, where he was very detailed in his thought process for an on-field exchange and became very philosophical in his responses to us. Given his passion for art, it was one of those moments where I saw a glimpse of how he approaches life and the role that soccer plays in it. So before we get to Owain's responses to The Soccer Life, I thought I would pass along his entire answers to those press conference questions after a 1-1 draw to Bethlehem late in the 2018 season: 

"Being a goalkeeper in that situation, you've got to put yourself as much in the attackers mind as possible. Because at the end of the day, I don't know whether you've ever stood in goal, but it's pretty big behind you. You've got to fill the goal as much as you can. In that scenario, you've got to realize, what's the percentage. Is he going to take the shot early? In that case, you got to hold back. Or is he going to take his touch. In that moment, you got a decision to make on whether you can go close him down and go for the percentage ball with your body spread or whether you hang back and maybe make a reaction save. You hold your ground and make the save that way. Goalkeeping is all about position decision making and it's all a learning curve. So yeah. You win some, you lose some.
You know, soccer, things don't happen overnight and when something goes wrong, it's easy to change. We had a plan in place at the start of the season before all of this happened and we've tried to stick with that. Things aren't going to be perfect all the time. In any walks to life. Whether it's a game of soccer or whether it's your family or whatever it is. Things are going to happen. But if you believe in what you do and keep doing it, hopefully you'll come out the better end, rather than the worst of it. It's just, keep believing, keep working hard, stick together and we need as many people buying into this sport here in Indiana and Indianapolis. If we can get more people, get more people cheering us on, then that would be fantastic. But the gang we have here of support has been phenomenal, but if we can get more and galvanize everything, then it will be fantastic. It will be even better. And with that, as loud as they can be, if they can get louder, then that can only get better on the pitch itself. So that would be fantastic.

Now for Owain's responses to The Soccer Life:

1. Name:
- Owain Fôn Williams

2. Role (Player, Parent, Coach, Referee, General Spectator, All of the Above, None of the Above, Other):
- Player

3. Soccer-specific Nickname (and any story behind it):
- The Fonz, Fonners because people couldn’t pronounce my 1st name!!

4. Age became interested in soccer:
- Since walking!

5. First recollection of the game:
- My dad’s under 7 team

6. Highest level of play achieved:
- International

Owain has also played for clubs in the English Football League, as well as the Scottish Premier League, including Inverness Caledonian Thistle, who loaned him to Indy Eleven in 2018. He currently plays for Dunfermline Athletic in the Scottish Championship.

7. Honors/Awards
- Semifinal of UEFA Euro 2016

8. Last competitive match – Date (if known) & Level of Play
- Today

As has happened a few time with these surveys, by the time I post them, the person has likely played at least one more game. In this case, since Owain is still playing professionally for Dunfermline Athletic Football Club, he's played a few games, the last being a 1-1 draw against Partick Thistle. If seasons hadn't been postponed/suspended due to COVID-19, he would have played several with just four games remaining in the season. If only...

9. Position:
- Goalkeeper

10. Jersey number:
- 1

11. Coaching experience:
- Some

12. Refereeing experience:
- None

13. Most memorable moment(s):
- Earning my first international cap

Owain's first international cap came in November 2015 in a friendly against the Netherlands. 

14. Least memorable moment(s):
- Relegated

15. Favorite World Cup moment(s):
- Too many to choose

16. Favorite team(s)
- I don’t have one!

17. Favorite Historical player:
- Peter Schmeichel

18. Favorite Current Player
- Gigi Buffon

19. Indoor vs Outdoor:
- Outdoor

20. Grass vs Turf:
- Grass

21. Other sports played (and to what level):
- No

22. Other Comments:
- Hope you’re well brother

Thanks Owain! You too.

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