The journey of a footballer is not always a smooth sailing one, just ask Fairfield Bulls’ Club Secretary and Media/Public Relations Officer Sargon Hassdo.
The 29-year-old aspired to be a professional footballer as a young ten-year-old for his beloved Fairfield Bulls, but as the years rolled on, so did the injuries as well as studies and after competing for the club’s senior side in the old Football NSW State League 2 competition as well as playing community football in the Southern Districts FA area, he turned his attentions to volunteering for the club.
“I have been playing for the Bulls ever since I was a ten-year old.
“It was there I commenced my journey and played through till the Under 16’s then at 17, I made my first-grade debut in the old State League 2 competition conducted by Football NSW.
“At 18 I decided to stop playing to study at University.
“After graduating, I returned to play community football for a few years but after injuries, I decided to become a volunteer, I wanted to give back to the sport I love and footballing system which has continuously put a smile on my face for over two decades.”
The historic Bulls outfit, a club founded by Assyrian migrants in the 1970s’, has prided itself on the hard work and efforts of its dedicated volunteers like Hassdo who have ensured that its participants were all well looked after pre, during and post football season.
Hassdo has played a pivotal role in the communications department providing adequate information across all the club’s channels in a bid to further increase the Bulls’ awareness from a registration and media perspective in NSW.
“I am responsible for attending and relaying all correspondence from Association Meetings, Football NSW updates and relevant football information to the club.
“I am also responsible for the club adhering and mandating all relevant footballing constitutional clauses whether internal or external and in charge of media releases relevant to our Club to promote and increase participation in or outside of our game. I am also a part of a Sub-Committee which manages our home ground Nineveh Stadium (hire, maintenance, upgrades and grant applications).
“With 13 Committee Volunteers (Non-Paid) that do it for the love of the Club and 46 Coaches and Manager Volunteers (Non-Paid), Fairfield Bulls FC now has a second and third generation input into Club Management, Coaching and Member Player involvement which is a testament to the team’s historic roots.
“From a family perspective and how important the club is to me, my partner volunteers in the canteen on some weekends, my brother played at the club as a Junior, father played back home (Syria) in local competitions and sister managed an Under 7s team last year.”
Hassdo especially paid a glowing tribute to the thousands of volunteers who continue to pump through the hours on a non-paid basis with the mindset of keeping their clubs on point with playing the game they love.
“Without Volunteers there would be no community football, no grassroots pathways and no progress of the system. Elite football will only grow in Australia if there are more Volunteers and resources provided at grassroots/community space.”
From the get-go, you could sense that Hassdo was in love with the game and that was all thanks to Brazilian superstar Ronaldo and French Legend Zinedine Zidane.
“As kids growing up you always look towards your heroes for inspiration. Mine came from the period when the Brazilian Ronaldo went on to score 25 Serie A goals for Inter Milan and the France 98’ Zidane Masterclass era.
“Also, a special mention to one of the greatest Assyrian footballers playing for our club Samir Issa, who would always put on a show for the Juniors that would watch the First Grade either at training or in matches at Nineveh Stadium.”
With Community Football set for kick-off once more this week, Hassdo, like so many volunteers of our game, have been eagerly anticipating the sport’s recommencement ever since it went into COVID-19 lockdown mode in March this year.
“I have missed it so much that you could make a romantic hit movie out of me. The vibe during training/matches and seeing my beloved club progress was mostly missed but you can tell how much joy its brought to everyone ever since we were given the green light to train once more.
“The social cohesion that we see during the weekends at our fields between our Members and others of the community brings a great sense of happiness, our club does have many culturally diverse and newly arrived immigrants from the Fairfield region as participants. When they are all connecting and socialising with one and another it brings great joy for our Committee knowing we are also apart of the wider community and not just trying to be one of the better technical teams going around.”
“Just like Craig Foster’s commentary when John Aloisi sent the Socceroos to the 2006 FIFA World Cup – “YES, C’MON, GO ON SON”, I am as happy as ever readily waiting with anticipation for the first ball to be kicked in a few days time.
“A massive congratulations to SDSFA for working overtime and making sure there would be community football played when there was so much uncertainty, the constant updates from the top of the pyramid down gave our committee the confidence to smile, be patient and keep loving Football.”