INDIANAPOLIS — It's the first of its kind in Indianapolis, offering youth a state-of-the-art facility to train for soccer.
5 Star Training Center, located on the city's northwest side, held its grand opening on Saturday, June 12. And, a retired professional soccer player made it all happen; building the facility to help young athletes see a brighter future.
"I have a little girl with big dreams of wanting to become a soccer player and she played for a specific club. And that club, the coaches told her that she wasn't good enough. I don't know how you could label someone that young at not being good enough,” Pedro Anderson, owner of 5 Star Training Center said.
A loaded statement that could have shattered a child's dream, was enough for Anderson to create a facility where no other athlete would be told such a thing. And instead, inspired them to be their best.
"We started doing a little training here and there and then she came to me and was like, "Pedro, I know what my dream is. I want to play for a big college in the country. I want to represent my country one day. Can you help me?" Anderson said.
So, he went to work. Starting in a small laundromat, then a tiny studio, and now a 20,000 square foot facility.
"You're developing yourself for the game, but also in life,” Heather MacNab explained.
MacNab will be attending Princeton University in the fall. But, due to COVID-19, she was able to train a little longer with Anderson to prepare for her season in the fall.
"I really never thought I'd be in the position I am. I'm so much prepared for college because of 5 Star,” MacNab said.
Anderson said he knows firsthand how it feels to not have much while trying to chase your dreams. That's why he's making this state-of-the-art facility affordable to all.
"My athletes, when they walk through this door, they understand. It's not about money at all," he said. "Even though you have money, or you don't have money we'll figure it out."
5 Star Training Center has more than 200 athletes already, including some of the nation's top players. Anderson said about 97% of his athletes are girls and women, taking the sport to new heights for the Circle City.