HE is the Queanbeyan sports rising star that has never represented a local club, but next week Karabar's Nicholas Zakoski will start full time sports schooling life at Melbourne's highly acclaimed Maribyrnong Sports Academy.
The 15-year old had found a second home at the Canberra Football Club, based in Deakin, where he had played since he was 10, but now he hopes to break into the Victorian Premier League and hit the long road to the Socceroos and the English Premier League.
It was former national A-League player and Canberran Shaun Ontong who had a scholarship for the Melbourne school to give away, and two months ago Zakoski was the the player that caught his eye.
"I was spotted by Shaun Ontong, he coached me here at the Ontong Patafta Academy, then he moved to a different pathway in Melbourne and offered me a scholarship over there at the full-time sports school," said Zakoski.
While being a massive achievement, it will also be a huge commitment for the up-and-comer, who will endure 10 hour days at school.
"I will be at school from seven o'clock till five o'clock in the afternoon, and during those days I'll have my normal classes like maths and english, and as well as that I'll have training in the morning, during the day and afternoon," he said.
And while he dreams to play for Liverpool in England and for his country at a World Cup, he still stressed the importance of grass-roots football.
"I've learnt a lot here with my mentor Andy Bernal, who's an ex-Socceroo, and also with my coaches," he said.