SUFFOLK COUNTY, N.Y. - Joe Scally grew up playing soccer. His mom, Margaret, was his coach until he was 13.
"He started when he was 5," she said. "They kept moving him up in age."
By 15, Scally became the second-youngest player to sign a Major League Soccer contract when he joined New York City FC.
And just like every player, Scally, too, always dreamed of making it to the World Cup.
"When we were kids we always talked about it — being there and watching these guys on TV," his older brother Drew said.
Now that dream is a reality. Scally, who grew up in Lake Grove, was one of 26 players chosen to represent the U.S. Men's National Team at the FIFA World Cup in Qatar. The 19-year-old right back, who plays for Mönchengladbach, is the youngest on the roster.
"Here he is at 19 heading to Qatar to the World Cup," said his mom.
It was the news he and his family had hoped for.
The call came in last week after the Scallys touched down in New York after a visit with Joe in Germany. His younger sister Anna calls him adventurous and determined.
"I was going to text him that I landed and I saw he's going to the World Cup and I started screaming," Anna said.
Watch parties will be held at Village Idiot Pub, which is co-owned by the family. Among the specials are drinks and the newly named Scally sandwich.
"He's following the path that he wants to be on," Margaret said. "So really just happy for him and very proud."
His parents plan to fly to Qatar in time for the opener against Wales on Monday. His siblings will root him on at home where a letter of encouragement from the fictional TV character Ted Lasso also hangs in the Village of Lake Grove.