‘I want to bring joy to Morocco’ – Schalke 04’s Amine Harit on his ultimate football dream

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The 21-year-old hopes to put smiles on the faces of his compatriots with skills and impact on the football pitch

Schalke 04 midfielder Amine Harit has disclosed that his dream is to bring joy to Morocco with his talent.

Harit, born in France to Moroccan parents, represented the European country at different youth levels before opting to feature for the Atlas Lions in September 2017.

A month later, the 21-year-old made his debut for the north African nation as a 90th-minute substitute against Gabon and has become a regular player in Herve Renard's squad.

He played a role in Morocco's return to the World Cup after a 20-year absence and was part of the travelling squad to Russia where he made a single appearance against Iran.

Despite his ties with France - the country he started his professional career - the former Nantes midfielder feels 'indebted' to Moroccans.

“I love France. It’s given me everything in my life. But Morocco … Moroccans, those are my people, too. I feel this connection to the country that I can’t fully explain,” Harit wrote in Players Tribune.

“France gave me so much, but my family is my everything. And they’re Moroccan. My grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins — so many of them still live in Morocco. So when I had to choose who I wanted to play for, I felt indebted to those people.

“Remember how I said I had a street mentality? It takes a lot for me to get emotional. But when I was playing for the national team this past summer and we beat the Ivory Coast 2–0 to qualify for the World Cup… I cried. I really did so much. Tears of joy.

“And when we arrived back in Morocco, the support we had when we landed was so, so incredible. I’ve never seen anything like it in my life. I want that again. I want it a million times over.

“I want to bring joy to Morocco. Everything I do is for my family. And if you’re from Morocco, you’re my family.

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“Now you know a bit on me — Amine. So I hope you remember a few of those things. Because I’m only 21. There’s more to come. Believe that. And remember that, too.”

Harit has featured sparingly for Schalke 04 this season and was an 88th-minute substitute in their 3-2 loss to Manchester City on Wednesday.

He will be hoping to make his 15th Bundesliga appearance of the season when Schalke 04 visit Mainz 05 on Saturday.