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Apr, 2022

NJ Youth Soccer Announces Tobias Duran-Cardona as Comeback Player of the Year

Khya Robinson, NJ Youth Soccer

NJYS Comeback Player of the Year Award Is Presented By JAG-ONE Physical Therapy

New Jersey Youth Soccer continues its virtual celebration of the 34th Annual NJYS Awards Presented by RWJBarnabas Health today, officially announcing Tobias Duran-Cardona as the recipient of the 2021 NJYS Comeback Player of the Year Award Presented by JAG-ONE Physical Therapy. As part of his acknowledgement, Duran-Cardona participated in an exclusive interview with Gotham FC defender Estelle Johnson.

“I am so grateful and honored that I was selected for the 2021 NJYS Comeback Player of the Year. I hope my story inspires and gives hope to other children who are struggling to get back to what they love,” said Duran-Cardona. “After brain surgery, my physical ability felt limited, and I thought I was never going to recover, but I kept fighting for it and eventually returned to the field with my team as a forward. I learned from my experience that fear is best challenged with a calm mind, and with commitment and determination, you really can overcome anything. I want to see you on the field smiling, playing and having fun, so do not give up, keep fighting!”

Duran-Cardona, a member of Summit Soccer Club Sevilla, began having headaches and double vision at the age of nine. He and his family later found out he had a brain tumor in his pineal gland (only 1% of brain tumors are found in that part of the brain). By the time he was 11, the tumor grew, and he was informed he would need surgery. After having that procedure, Duran-Cardona went through a challenging rehabilitation process. However, he always kept a positive attitude and celebrated every possible accomplishment. Throughout the entire ordeal, his love of soccer was at the forefront of his mind. He watched plenty of games in anticipation for the day he could play again, and that day soon became a reality for him. Less than three months after his brain surgery, he was back on the field and scored the first goal of his return.

“Tobi has come such a long way and has now played 6-7 games,” said Andy Ralphs, who coaches Duran-Cordona. “His participation on the team has risen the level for all players on Sevilla. Tobi has never offered any excuses. No moaning. Watching him improve since his surgery has been brilliant. It is amazing what the kid has gone through, and I hope his comeback story inspires other kids.”

The perseverance and bravery shown by Tobias Duran-Cardona during his rehabilitation is truly inspiring for all, and it makes him incredibly worthy of the 2021 Comeback Player of the Year Presented by JAG-ONE Physical Therapy.

To find out more information about New Jersey Youth Soccer or to contact us directly, please email [email protected]. Also make sure to follow us on social media: @NJYouthSoccer



As part of his acknowledgement, Duran-Cardona participated in an exclusive interview with Gotham FC defender Estelle Johnson.

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New Jersey Youth Soccer

569 Abbington Dr, Suite 5
East Windsor, New Jersey 08520

Phone: 609-490-0725
Email: [email protected]
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