Real Sapphire academy poised to groom real talents

There could be a million football academies scattered across Nigeria but the management of Real Sapphire Football Club have said they are determined to create a distinct identity that should place them shoulder to shoulder with any other quality sports training centre in any part of the world.
The Chairman/Chief executive Officer of the academy, Frank Peters, said in Lagos on Thursday that the project was born out of passion to develop the Nigerian young player the way he should be and it is expected that the desire for excellence will push the managers to the level they desire.
He said, “Having seen so much of the quality academies in Europe and the Americas, our goal here is to replicate them and this is achievable. We want young Nigerians to truly develop and showcase their talents the way it is done in standard sporting environments.

“We started off just a little above one year now but we are giving Nigerians the framework to be what they truly want to be.”Peters who is based in the United Kingdom said it was a pity that he could not fulfil his own football dream, which was to play professionally in Europe as academics took over but he has over time observed that the difference between the Nigerian-bred players and their counterparts in Europe is not talent but technical knowledge.
“In that regard we sought the help of those who are experts in developing such basics at the right age and that led us into bringing an Argentinean coach to work with us. We researched and visited academies all over the world before arriving at the details we have here. Gomez (the Argentinean) is an expert in what we are doing and we hope that in the next few years Nigerians and the clubs abroad should be able to see the difference in our products.”
Real Sapphire team are operating temporarily from a base in the Epe area of Lagos but are developing a permanent base in the Eleko area.
“I am impressed by what I have seen on ground,” Jorge Gomez said of the academy. “Europeans love talents from Nigeria, Ghana, Senegal and Cameroon but many arrive there that technically deficient. I am sure we can make things here a lot better.”

The young academy has so far been able to give Nigeria a good product as Saturday Ekejo of the U23 Olympic team is from Real Sapphire.


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