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Kenya— Kenya Football Stars Beat Barcelona, Athletico Madrid

European football academies have for some time been viewed as a worldwide foundation for capable youthful footballers trying to break into the lucrative field of expert football.

Compared with West Africa, players from East Africa have not been very much spoken about on football as excellent players. West Africa has groomed players such as John Obi Mikel from Nigeria, Didier Drogba from Ivory Coast, George Weah from Liberia, the only African to win the Balon D'Or, and presently Liberia's President.

But East African players and national groups have failed to meet expectations.

In any case, an academy in Nairobi has demonstrated its ability on the world stage, beating top European youth groups like Barcelona and Atletico Madrid, displaying that Kenya is a hotspot for future stars.

Acakoro Football Institute, situated on the edges of Nairobi, has humble training grounds. They have a solitary pitch which regularly loads with extensive puddles amid Kenya's long raining season. The grass is long, and the club's grounds are encompassed by tin-roofed casual lodging.

The institute draws its players from the neighborhood, most of whom originate from a single parent or HIV positive families that regularly live in destitution. Close by the pitch is Dandora, Nairobi's biggest dumpsite, where before Acakoro, a few of the group's youngsters used to work scouring the slopes of waste for nourishment or recyclables to offer.

Regardless of this, this is one of the country's only professional football academies, and also one of the available places where aspiring young Kenyans can nurture their skills, and have a shot at the big time. And they have proven themselves on the world's stage.

Acakoro nurtures a positive, team-spirited culture, and a comprehensive method that helps the students academically.

It is not surprising that when Acakoro found the opportunity to contend in Europe as it gave them a gigantic chance to display their ability in the field which still overwhelms spectators.

It was set-up in 2013 as a NGO by Stefan Koeglberger partnering alongside a Kenyan. The students fees and supplies are catered for.
Consistently the group contended in the Donauauen Cup, one of the hardest youth matches in Europe.
Unstoppable sides like Barcelona and Atletico Madrid were beaten by Acakoro, who won the cup a year ago - and the year prior to that as well.

It's an exceptional accomplishment for a gathering of children from Kenya who don't have the kind of game researchers, nutritionists and innovation found in European youth programs.

"When we completed that match everybody was so cheerful, and was amazed to see that we are the Acakoro Football Foundation, we are from Africa and we have gone in Europe and we have figured out how to win the cup," says Teddy, one of the stars of the group.


Solid and organized youth institutes, as Acakoro, are trying to change this. And with their skills, they will make a difference in East Africa.

Koeglberger is without a doubt positive about this."I think that Kenya is really a sleeping giant in football because there is so much talent." He says