GETAFE, Spain — A year ago, Osama Mohsen, a Syrian soccer coach and civil war refugee, started a promising new life here on the outskirts of Madrid after enduring an infamous fall.
In September 2015, as Mohsen tried to run across the Hungarian border while holding his son in his arms, he was tripped by a camerawoman reporting from the scene. Footage of the episode went viral on social media, providing a vivid reminder of the plight of Syrian refugees, forced to flee a civil war only to find themselves facing significant risks — and, at times, significant opposition — as they sought safety in Europe.
Mohsen, 52, acknowledged in an interview that becoming the victim of a spiteful attack came with a measure of good luck. He was almost immediately identified as a soccer coach when his fall made headlines, and a Spanish soccer school offered him a job. He moved into a two-bedroom apartment, and Cristiano Ronaldo walked his son onto the field before a Real Madrid match.
“I always know how very special Spain is for football — it is the best — so it is lucky and it is very good to arrive here,” Mohsen said.
The story, it seemed, had found its happy ending, and the…