Melbourne Victory sensation Elvis Kamsoba thought he'd blown his chance of playing in the A-League after a week-long trial with Adelaide United came to nothing.
The Burundian refugee had been invited to trial with his hometown A-League club three years ago.
"Josep Gombau was there and he did actually (like me)," he said.
"But the week he called me in was the same week he left. He went and I was there with a different coach and he didn't fancy me.
"One coach comes in, another comes in ... that made it a bit hard."
Kamsoba was left with a decision: leave his adopted city or try his luck in Melbourne.
"I had a chat with my mum before I came, she was worried about me living by myself, but I told her it was my decision, trying to get any contract, as it wasn't working for me in Adelaide," he said.
Kamsoba hasn't looked back.
He was given a chance at ex-NSL powerhouse Melbourne Knights before switching to Avondale and starring in their run to this year's FFA Cup quarter-finals.
The 22-year-old's electric pace was on show even as the side lost to premiers Sydney FC, and he was awarded the Mike Cockerill Medal for best non-A-League performer in the competition.
From there, Kevin Muscat invited the flashy winger for another trial through December.
Kamsoba did enough, and on Saturday he could star in one of the A-League's biggest fixtures: the Melbourne derby.
The pint-sized forward has made eight A-League appearances to date, but has yet to feature in a derby.
In fact he's only witnessed one of them, as a Victory invitee to AAMI Park for the most recent edition - a 1-1 draw - before signing in January.
"I've seen myself (the derby is) always a big game. I've watched one ... I didn't watch A-League as much (before I joined Victory) but when I was involved with the club I had to come," he laughed.
"The fans go crazy and I love that. I'm looking forward to playing."
Australian Associated Press