National defender Walter Moore calls time on professional career
By Avenash Ramzan
One of the country’s outstanding defenders, Walter Andre Moore, has called time on his football career, one which spanned two decades. The 35-year-old, who currently resides in Finland with his family, made the announcement on social media on Thursday.
Moore represented Guyana 74 times and scored five goals since his senior national team debut in February 2004.
“Sitting here with some joyful tears writing this; can’t believe 20 years has gone by of a journey filled with good and bad memories, but like the say all good things most come to an end,” Moore said on his Facebook profile.
Moore expressed gratitude to the Almighty, his family and friends for believing in him and the coaches “who took a risk in signing me and making this journey one to remember.”
The Golden Jaguars #5 represented local sides Santos FC, Georgetown Football Club, Alpha United, Slingerz FC and Fruta Conquerors, and also plied his trade overseas, turning out for FF Jaro (Finland), AC Oulu (Finland), FC Astana (Kazakhstan), FC Vostok (Kazakhstan), Charlotte Eagles (USA), Caledonia AIA (Trinidad) and North East Stars (Trinidad).
During an exclusive interview with News Room on Thursday, Moore reflected on his career, his most memorable moment, wearing the Golden Jaguars jersey and some of the influential persons in his career.
News Room (NR): Reflect on your career, from where you came and the path football has taken you
Walter Moore (WM): “I came from a big family in Georgetown, Guyana. Grew up in Agricola, then moved to Lodge and then South. I started playing with Santos FC and Cuffy and then moved to GFC and then Fruta Conquerors and so on. From a small age I knew that If I wanted to become a professional player, there is no secret in being successful- it’s hard work meeting opportunity so I made sure I put in the hard work every day, even on those days when I felt like I couldn’t get out of bed and do what I had to do, I still did it and when my opportunity came I grabbed it with both hands.”
NR: What would you say was your most memorable moment?
WM: “I had a lot of good memories in my career, but the one that stands out the most is us qualifying for the Gold Cup in 2018. Being there and seeing the fans reaction towards it has been the one that stands out most in my memory. We know that Guyana has the talent to qualify for a major tournament and we were just waiting for the right moment, and I guess that was our moment and we took it and the feeling after realising that actually did qualify for the Gold Cup was amazing.”
NR: Representing your country and wearing the Golden Jaguars jersey on the international stage…explain that feeling
WM: “Putting on your national colours; it’s always a privilege to represent your country. Every time you it (jersey) on, you want to represent your country and it’s been a fantastic feeling. I can recall playing against Mexico in the Azteca Stadium. Walking out that tunnel and seeing the crowd out there 85,000 people; it’s a feeling that you really can’t explain. It’s just an overwhelming emotion that you get doing something that you were blessed with to do and actually doing it on an international scene is just a feeling that you just can’t explain. It’s something that you have to experience and cherish for the rest of your live if you get an opportunity to do it.”
NR: Having now walked away from playing, what can we expect from you going forward, especially as it relates to your further involvement in the sport?
WM: “I always want to be involved in football in some aspect of the game. Recently I finished my UEFA B Licence and I’m pursuing my A Licence next, and then I have the UEFA Pro after that, and hopefully coaching would be the next step for me. Also, I have three active kids that need daddy at home. My two boys are playing football already so I have more time now to go in the football hall and play some football with them.”
NR: Highlight some of the persons who would have played a significant role in shaping your career
WM: “Definitely Jamaal Shabazz and Neider dos Santos, who actually saw potential in me or the player I could become. They encouraged me to go out there and play and work hard every game. The Caledonia family who I can say is basically responsible for my career getting the jumpstart. From there I went on to the US and then from the US to Kazakhstan, and to be honest the brotherhood I had in Caledonia and the attitude they instill in us about hard work and working for your brother (had a positive impact). I had a coach there- Jerry Moe- he would always use the likes of Michael Jordan and Roger Federer as examples when he tries to explain something to us. There is no shortcut in being successful and these are the people who instill in me that if you want to do it you got to work hard for it.”
Moore also credits his late mother who was always supportive of his football pursuits, as well as his wife who would have to endure him being “a big baby” whenever results don’t go his way on the pitch.