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'These are memories he's going to have forever'; Louisville City FC signs 8-year-old 'Super Drew' to contract

Eight-year-old Drew Esposito's dreams were realized Thursday as he put pen to paper and officially joined the Louisville City FC.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville City FC welcomed 8-year-old Drew Esposito, who most call "Super Drew," onto their team Thursday.

Louisville City FC Coach Danny Cruz held a contract signing with Esposito inside the Lynn Family Sports Vision and Training Center.

"It's a special, special day," he said. "He's a fast, young kid. I'm excited to see his wheels out here today."

Not only was "Super Drew" handed a one-game contract coming with perks like an authentic jersey and access to club facilities, he was also given the chance to train with the team.

Drew's father, Jeremy Esposito, said it was a dream come true for his boy.

"Oh it's awesome. You know, he's a soccer lover, always has been," he said.

When asked why he had such a deep passion for the sport, Drew said, "I love it because you have to run around, kick the ball and score."

And, there's no doubt about it. The signing of "Super Drew" was a huge score for Louisville City FC.

"They're smiling, they're enjoying him being out here," Cruz said. "We talk to the players a lot about inspiration, about not taking for granted the opportunity that you have to do what you do every day. And I think he's a perfect example of that."

Not all superheroes fly through the sky, hence Esposito's superhero nickname.

It was Christmas Eve of 2018 that the then 4-year-old was diagnosed with Medulloblastoma: a fast-spreading form of brain cancer. What followed for "Super Drew" was a year filled with surgeries, three rounds of intensive chemotherapy and two bone marrow transplants.

"We spent a year in Nortons, just inpatient," Jeremy Esposito said. "He went from not being able to walk, talk, drink or anything to playing out here with UCL players out here on the practice pitch."

Drew's father said he has had "clean scans" for the last 30 months. 

The special day was put on as a collaboration between Louisville City FC and Norton Children's Hospital, both groups Drew's father thanked immensely. 

 "These are memories he's going to have forever," he said.

Drew will make his debut with the team this weekend as it hosts the Charleston Battery for an 8 p.m. Saturday kickoff at Lynn Family Stadium.

While "Super Drew" remains in remission, he continues to inspire others seeking treatment at Nortons.

His parents formed "Super Drew's Crew" following his diagnosis. It's an initiative that raises money for the Norton Children's Cancer Institute through Norton Children's Hospital Foundation. Since its inception, it's raised more than $130,000. 

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