Not unlike his "Ted Lasso" character Dani Rojas, for 15-year old Cristo Fernández, football -- known stateside as soccer -- really was life.
At 15 and already in the professional soccer system in his native Mexico, Fernández had little else besides the game on his mind. He'd attend high school at night and for three years after he finished, soccer was all he did. His parents, however, encouraged him to pursue his education, as well.
"Football (Soccer) was the only thing I wanted to do, but my parents pushed me to study something, and I was like, 'Okay, just so you stop bothering me,'" he said.
Because he's always loved languages -- he speaks four and is hoping to learn Italian by the end of the year -- he pursued communications, admitting that at the beginning "I was the worst student because I didn't care at all."
That changed around the time a knee injury sidelined him, and Fernández found himself in film classes. There, he discovered a new passion.
"I thank my parents for encouraging me to try something new, and that's what I also encourage everyone in life [to do]. They should never close themselves to other opportunities," he said.