“I never wanted to be a football player. I wanted to be a policeman.” Mario Melchiot
In 1985, at just 9 years old, Mario got his first try-out with the Ajax Youth Team, making the team after only two preliminary games.
Mario made his debut in the first team of Ajax on 14th August 1996, at the opening of the Amsterdam Arena against Italian club A.C. Milan. He was only 19 years old. That same year Mario won the “Best Young Player” trophy, and subsequently signed a 2-year contract with Ajax.
Mario was born in Amsterdam and is the 4th out of 5 children. He grew up with a single mother working 2 jobs in order to provide for her children. She’d rush home, make dinner and hurry to her 2nd job, very often forgetting to eat!
To this day, Mario is amazed at how his mother managed such a large family, and hectic work schedule.
Mario’s football career started thanks to his older brother and role model, Winston. Winston embodied everything Mario aspired to, and Mario shadowed his every move… so of course when Winston started playing football…
Growing up, Mario was taught the value of “giving back.” From an early age, he was determined to succeed in life in order to give back to his mother, family and friends, who had always been there for him. Mario thanks his mother, Diana, for the love and confidence she instilled in him, which has been instrumental to his past and current success.
In the spring of 1996, Mario lost his older brother, role model, and hero, Winston, to a heart attack. This loss made Mario eager to find a way to contribute to the lives of others affected by heart complications and their loved ones. Mario became a spokesperson for…