Goshen College is home to many international students, a large number of them athletes.
Sven Badstieber, a senior accounting major and soccer player from Stuttgart, Germany, was not always a soccer player.
But when the World Cup came to Germany in 2006, that changed everything.
“There was so much hype around the World Cup it made me and my friends want to play soccer,” he said.
After that, Badstieber began his soccer career. Another inspiration to Badstieber’s soccer career was professional soccer player Bastian Schweinsteiger. Schweinsteiger’s team, Bayern Munich, was only two hours away from Badstieber’s hometown of Stuttgart, and Badstieber remembers going to watch him play on multiple occasions.
As Badstieber’s soccer career began to blossom, he found himself playing for seven club teams in Germany. Over his 11-year ametuer stretch, Badstieber was able to climb to the second highest division.
Badstieber was recruited to come to Goshen College in 2017 by former soccer coach Arron Patrick.
“Coming into Goshen College was really good,” he said. “We won most of our games and played in the conference semifinals while starting all the games as a freshman.”
Despite Badstieber’s early success, it was an up and down soccer career at Goshen College.
Since coaching changes took place in his junior year, Badstieber has recognized the program’s focus on the future.
“These past two season have been about rebuilding,” he said.
With so much uncertainty this season due to COVID-19, he has had no choice but to become a vocal leader to his teammates as a senior. The team has undergone a handful of scheduling changes this season, which never allowed the team to reach their full potential.
Prior to this season, Badstieber spent his quarantine at home practicing his skills and attending Zoom meetings with the team.
Badstieber was still looking forward to his senior season.
However, just two games into the season, Badstieber went into quarantine after being contact traced.
Despite the disappointing senior season, Badstieber is very appreciative of his Goshen College career.
“All in all, I love playing for Goshen,” he said. “It feels like home.”
Badstieber loves the connections he has made with people all over the world because of the game of soccer and still holds a positive outlook on finishing his athletic and academic career strong.
“I want to try to finish my last game as strong as possible,” he said. “I also want to get the first win this season. All we can do is try to do the best against Saint Francis (Wednesday night).”
What’s next for Badstieber is maintaining his focus on school without the structure of soccer.
With the possibility of this being his last semester at Goshen College, Badstieber is still deciding whether to come back next semester or to finish online while in Germany.
After he earns his degree from Goshen College, Badstieber plans to go back to Europe for his masters and possibly continue his soccer career.