Everything you Need to Know About Being a Footballer in Ghana
Now and then, you see young people and even small children make a football out of rubber bags, form a small team, and play in their homes and parks. That’s how much people love football.
Many Ghanaian youths have a passion for the game, but there seem to be things limiting them from reaching their goal, why is that? Is it not a good profession? What does it entail? We asked a few questions, and we will share the answers with you to help you decide to reach your potential.
The following are things you probably didn’t know about being a footballer in Ghana;
How old do you need to be to start playing football?
Did you know the Ghana Football Association(GFA) has a slot for under 13 players? This means you can start playing football even at the age of 10, once you have the talent.
But to be signed as a professional footballer in Ghana, to be able to play in premier teams, you need to be 16 years and above, that is the rule laid down by FIFA. To be able to play under a certain age, the GFA came up with an MRI test for age determination. You can’t lie your way in anymore.
Football teams and academies, what is the difference?
Football teams don’t focus on the fundamentals of a player. They believe players already give the experience. But in an academy, players are thought a lot of things from the scratch.
How to pass and kick a ball among others. In the academy, no one pays you a dime for learning, you’re like an apprentice. You are only provided with accommodation and feeding.
Academies in Ghana scout for their players, perhaps a team’s management sees you play somewhere and sees potential, but also sees that you need more training, they may take you.
Your parent can also enroll you in an academy and pay for you to be trained. So, parents who see the game in their children can support them by enrolling them.
How do you get into a team and also get someone to manage you?
It all depends on how good you are. From the academy, people will see how talented and focused you are and link you to premier teams. Even if you’re not in an academy, someone who sees you play somewhere, probably on the internet can offer to help and manage you.
Some people also do it for business, they take players, manage them and share income under a contract. Your parent can also stand in as managers. Support you financially and give you the encouragement you need.
This used to be very easy before, but in recent times, you need to know someone “big” to go anywhere. But then again, your talent can speak for you as well.
Is this a good profession? Are there struggles?
The truth is, when you get to the peak, there is gold. But it’s a bumpy road. It’s a tough profession that deals with chance and luck. It is usually difficult for some people to make it to the top because they lack support.
Friends and family don’t usually support the career because they believe it’s a waste of time. Ghanaians love football, but they don’t support it. That’s a fact. So if you’re an aspiring footballer, it’s going to be tough getting support and motivation which might cause you to fall on the way.
These small teams in Ghana don’t pay much, but with patience, talent, and the right connections, you will make it to the top. Loneliness is one of the struggles. You will barely have time for anything. From the pitch to home, to pitch.
Is it easy to get a chance to play outside Ghana?
Getting a chance to play outside Ghana has a lot to do with luck and talent. These two things are what you need. Apart from that, your manager can send you on trials to play for a team outside Ghana.
The team you’re playing for here in Ghana may have a link to an agent in another country and if a team outside Ghana finds you through social media, they can call you themselves, this is where luck and talent play a role.
And oh, you can get links through family and friends as well. It’s better playing outside, it pays better and you will learn new things along the way.
You will do this under a contract, which will require you to play for some years within the leagues period. From there, you can be eyeing better deals with time.
Some secrets to becoming a successful footballer in Ghana
As a footballer, it’s important to invest in yourself through training. Consistency is the key. It is okay to be lonely and lose motivation along the way but it’s up to you to lift yourself.
You can not serve two masters at the same time, but to be on the safe side, you can play 70% and learn a trade of 30%. It’s not wrong. You can follow your dreams but learn a trade as well. Because African doesn’t exactly support and invest in football.
But your talent speaks. Consistency speaks. Respect and humbleness do the trick as well. Playing football teaches you to a good team players and leadership skills, make use of it every step of the way. Look for motivation in yourself and anywhere else you can find it.
For the last time, your talent and skill will speak for you. There many other players aspiring to reach the goal you want to reach, so you need to have what it takes to stand out. Pass through the right means and believe in yourself and your potentials.
The best place to start from is the academy. That’s where you can easily be seen. Make use of social media and legal links as well.