By Lamin Fadera
Renowned European football Agents are impressed with the raw talent and quality of The Gambia, a tiny West African nation and a developing football country.
K.A.A Gent, a Belgian Pro League team head scout for Africa, Harry Varley, and Swedish Agent Patrick Mork, two of the renowned football scouts and agents, said they are impressed with the number of raw talents they saw in the Gambia during their visit to the Smiling Coast.
Speaking to Alkamba Times Sports, Partick, who has over 37 years of experience as an agent, said it only took him five minutes to identify the quality of Baboucarr ‘Steve’ Trawally when he first came to The Gambia in 2015 for a scouting mission.
Steve eventually moved to China and played for Hangzhou Greentown, which became a successful story for the then-youngster.
According to Patrick, he is back in the Gambia to hunt for more raw talents.
“For me now, this visit is excellent; it has confirmed everything good I felt. So, we have seen four to five players who have potential. One of the problems is that Mr. Modou Lamin Beyai is doing a good job, and some of these players are going. A couple of players are set for contracts in Europe. Patrick Mork told TAT Sports.
He highlighted that he is grateful to have previously contributed to the careers of top Ghanaian superstars like Michael Essien, Sulay Muntari, and Asamo Gyan in the 1990s.
The likes of Essien, Asamoa Gyan, and Sulay Muntari became success stories because they were later able to help Ghana reach the World Cup.
Mork praised Modoustic PR CEO Modou Lamin Beyai for his impressive contribution to Gambian football.
“Modou reminds me of myself when I was young, using two phones to establish contacts, help players get clubs abroad, and many more. One day, I would like to sit with Modou and watch the World Cup where the Gambia is playing..”
For his part, Harry Varley, Belgian Pro League K.A.A Gent’s head scout for Africa revealed that his mission in The Gambia is to understand the Gambian football, the energy pushing the raw talents, the people behind the success, and identifying basic skills.
Gambian international midfielder Sulayman Marreh previously played for the Belgian club K.A.A Gent.
Before coming to The Gambia, Harry Varley previously visited Rwanda, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and other African countries.
He said the number of talents seen in the Gambia was extraordinary.
“The Gambia’s trajectory in the international scene is extraordinary. So, I needed to come to the country and see how things were done. To clearly understand the structures in place and the energy behind what is pushing the Gambian football forward,” Agent Varley noted.
He continued: “As much as I am here to scout talents, I am also here to know how these talents are produced. Who is coaching them? We can all see there is real in the Gambia from the outside.”
Mr. Varley revealed to have visited many places, but the raw talents he saw in the Gambia are incredible.
Europe Losing Organic Talent and Creativity
Despite Europe being endowed with good infrastructure, the raw talents and creativity are fading away, according to Belgian Pro League K.A.A Gent’s head scout for Africa, Harry Varley.
He said this is why they and the club must come to Africa and look for more organic talents.
“The European system is well-structured and takes a lot of creativity and individual quality. So, in Africa, we are looking for that more organic football,” he added.
“I have been to other countries before, like Sierra Leone and Liberia, before I came to the Gambia. In those countries, their players are allowed to play, but what impressed me with The Gambia is the talent and technical abilities, the structure in place, and the coaching ability,” A.A.K Gent Harry Varley told the Alkamba Times Sports.
This is Harry’s first visit to the Smiling Coast of the Gambia. It could be an excellent opportunity for young players who might sign professional contracts abroad.
Modoustic PR country representative Pa Mulie Jassey urged young players to work hard and take the opportunities that will come their way.
“Many young players want to sign contacts abroad but should wait for the right opportunities.”
Jarsey advised young players to ensure they have other options different from football.