Tom Vernon had worked for several years in various clubs in Ghana when he just over 10 years ago, decided to start his own youth academy. He saw what amazing talent that existed in the country and he also saw in which primitive conditions, most were forced to play in. Tom’s idea was to create something more complete. There were already academies in the country, most sponsored by major European clubs. What all these academies were missing, was that they did not take full responsibility for the players all the way. Tom wanted to create a future for their students, even if they did not become a professional soccer player.
Today, Right to Dream has one of the country’s finest establishments. Located along the Great Volga River, just outside the capital Accra. Here are six full-sized football pitches, accommodation, dining and schools. Players study the corresponding English primary school and high school and the teachers are all from England. The admissions emphasis on their ability and willingness to study as their football skills.
Right to Dream has an agreement with Manchester City and it is also this club who gets to pick players from the academy once they are 18 years old. Similarly, BK Häcken has an agreement with Right to Dream. One of the most famous players from the academy is Majeed Waris who played in BK Hacken for three years, became Premier Division top scorer, and then got sold to Spartak Moscow, where he has great success. BK Häcken has today Nasiru Mohammed, also from Right to Dream.
This year, the Academy has expanded to include girls fotboll. New houses have been built and the school expanded to accommodate up to 100 girls. According to Tom Vernon, it is primarily a matter of equality, but he also sees that talent among girls is just as great as that of the boys.
For the first time, Right to Dream will be in the Gothia Cup. To participate in the competitive B17 class, and it’s probably not an exaggeration to say that their games will be watched by plenty of agents and club representatives.