From London to Kean: The story of Luke Sussex

By Dan Canova

Luke Sussex went from waking up to the Big Ben Clock Tower in Westminster, Eng- land to attending class at Kean University and seeing Kean’s version of the Clock Tower in the heart of campus. The difference? About a couple hundred feet.

“I came to the United States to do something different with my life,” Sussex said. “None of my family ever left the country (England), so I came to Kean as this was the area I settled in, and was offered academic scholarships.”

Sussex always had and continues to have a passion for the game of soccer. From an early age, Sussex recalls playing five to seven days a week with groups of friends in his homeown just outside of London. At the age of 17 years old, Sussex began to play professionally in London for a short time and also played for his English college’s team and won a district county cup. Sadly, it all quickly came to an end when Sussex suffered a career threatening injury.

“I got injured by breaking my leg, snapping my tibia and half fracturing my fibula from a horrible tackle from behind,” Sussex said. “This happened during a game for my local town. I remember feeling empty, and the pain was not that bad physcally, more mental knowing my career could be over.”

Now all Sussex can do is take one day at a time.

“I’m training as much as I can right now,” Sussex said. “I’m trying to wait and see if I’ll ever be able to get back to full strength. That will decide my future goals. If my body heals I’ll get back into soccer, if not I have my degree as a backup plan.”

Sussex has intentions of trying out for Major League Soccer teams here in the United States if everything goes well with the healing process.

“If the desire is still there I will try and get into American soccer,” Sussex said. “If not, instead I might try coaching younger children so I can pass my knowledge on and help the future soccer players achieve what they want.”

All athletes have a role model; someone they look up to perhaps. Sussex is no different from the rest of the people who participate in sports they love.

“When growing up, David Beckham was my biggest influence,” Sussex said. “As I got older, I appreciated players like (Cristiano) Ronaldo and Pauleta because they played my position.”

Sussex always appreciated and loved the game, and he plans on being apart of it in some way, shape, or form in the near future. Soccer has always been apart of Sussex’s life and it doesn’t look like it will be changing anytime soon.

“I don’t remember when I started playing soccer,” Sussex said. “But when I was young I just remember always having a ball.”

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