In the vast and competitive realm of professional football, the emergence of young talent has always been seen as one of the most captivating components of the game. One name that has gained prominence in recent years is Ian Poveda.
Born in 2000, in Southwark, on the south of the River Thames, Ian Poveda captured the attention of football enthusiasts worldwide early on. The forward is a product of the Arsenal, Barcelona and Manchester City academies, which have between them produced some of the most renowned players in modern football.
From an early age, Poveda displayed an innate passion and dedication to the beautiful game, catching the eye of talent scouts all over the world, with his exceptional flair and natural talent. After working his way through the most prestigious academies in the world, he ended up in West Yorkshire playing for Leeds and played an important role in their campaign which saw them gain back promotion back to the Premier League in 2020. Since then the 23-year-old has spent some time away on loan but is firmly setting his sights back on Elland Road as he embarks on the 23/24 season.
You’ve played at some of the best academies and alongside the best players in the world. What do you still take from everything you learnt from these experiences and apply to your game today?
Being resilient and never giving up is one thing you always apply. Sometimes games don’t go your way but you learn to do the basics right, work hard and everything else will take care of itself.
Even after a highly successful career, every player is always striving to make their game better. Where would you like to further develop skills in your game?
That’s a no-brainer, to play in the Premier League is always my dream.
Often the people who are behind the scenes often go unnoticed in football. Is there any coaching staff that you think really improved you and why?
I’d say Marcelo Bielsa taught me the most and I’m most grateful. Hard work was the bare minimum with him and he’d constantly analyse your performance, so it’d make you a better player. Seeing him being so dedicated would make you not want to let him down.
Have you faced any significant injuries or periods in your career that you’ve felt proud to overcome?
Yes, I broke my leg, my ankle and tore all my ligaments at the same time. It was my first and only major injury. It set me back 5 months. The Doctor said I was lucky to be even back playing. I’m proud to have overcome it. It made me more dedicated and appreciate even more how lucky I am to do what I love for a living.
Are there any particular moments from your career so far that will stay with you forever?
Winning the championship with Leeds and getting promoted will forever stay with me.
You’ve experienced a lot for a 23-year-old footballer. What do you hope comes from your career going forward?
I hope I stay improving constantly and always stay active.
What interests you outside of football?
I’m interested in fashion & I appreciate good music!
Photographer: Elliot Hensford
Lighting- Kennth Leiw
Assistant- Fin Gleeson
Booking Agent: 1ONE CONCIERGE