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Soccer News of Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Source: Ghana Soccernet

'Darling Boy' Daniel Addo slams academy system in Ghana

1991 U17 World Cup winning midfielder Daniel ‘Darling Boy’ Addo has slammed the operations of soccer academies in the country, saying “it is pure business and not the nurturing of talents”.

He attributed the collapse of the colts system to the proliferation of soccer academies in the country.

“My self and players like Yaw Preko, Kuffuor, Odartey and others were products of the colts system, because that system really nurtured us and prepared us for the junior national team till we graduated from one level to the other,” he said.

The diminutive but intelligent midfielder revealed that the primary focus of the owners of the various academies is to recruit young players, train them and sell them to foreign clubs for meager purses.

“Most of them are interested in selling rather than nurturing the players as was the case in the colts system. I think it’s bad and it’s killing the colts system gradually.”

The former Black Stars player praised Airtel Ghana for the Airtel Rising Stars initiative which seeks to unearth soccer talents in schools through regional tourneys. “It is the only way that will help salvage the dwindling state of colts soccer in the Ghana.”

He engaged the attention of all when he walked into the launch of the Airtel Rising Stars programme midway at the Media Centre of the Accra Stadium last Friday.

Addo was a key member of the Starlets ‘91 squad comprising players such as Sebastian Barnes, goalkeeper Ben Owu, Alex Opoku, Yaw Preko, Osei Kuffuor, Kofi Nimo, Kelvin Essien, Baba Musah, Kofi Mbea, and Emmanuel Duah that won the U17 World Cup in Italy under coach Otto Pfister.

Darling boy was one of the few young players who joined the exodus bandwagon after the 1991 U17 World Cup. He was signed on by Germany’s Bayer Leverkuzen in 1992.

He also featured for the Black Satellites that won silver in Australia in 1993, as well as the Satellites that won silver in Japan.

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