Our guest on Episode #47 of the TGG Podcast, in association with Hudl, is Tom Vernon, the founder and Group CEO of Right to Dream Group.
=> SHOW NOTES:
02:12: What is Right to Dream and its philosophy?
04:46: Start of Right to Dream in 1999. Changing the 'extractive mindset'. Setting up the only residential girls' Academy in Ghana.
12:23: Moving into the USA and plan to buy an MLS club.
16:12: Trying to have a straight pipe rather than a pyramid with youth development.
17:39: Right to Dream recruitment days in Africa. 100,000 kids attend trials every year.
19:33: Appointing Ian Yates as Head of Global Recruitment. "We wanted someone who had been thinking in multiple sports in multiple ways. We want to go to places which are overlooked, where people might believe excellence does not exist."
21:35: Why "entrepreneurship in Africa is as tough as it gets." How he benefitted from white privilege.
23:42: Expelled from school. His own dyslexia. Why football needs to follow lead of other industries and recognise/ promote neurodiversity.
29:30: How the world - and football - are "rigged systems", with a high level of unfairness towards Africa.
34:13: Good book - 'Why I am no longer talking to white people about race.' Ghana's 'year of the return.' African diaspora returning and driving a different narrative.
37:21: Praise for Gareth Southgate "realities of the past and reconstructing the future." "One of the most inspirational stories in the sport in the last 20 years."
38:43: Is Right to Dream 'ultimate socialism'? Is it sometimes difficult to balance this with capitalism of raising finance/ selling players and corporate packages etc?
46:09: Buying FC Nordsjaelland. Reasons why. Developing youth - 14 of the first-team squad have come through the Academies in Ghana and Denmark.
51:50: Other leagues and clubs are taking lessons from what FCN and Right to Dream do, but not so much England.
54:38: Right to Dream's KPIs - social impact, brand equity and football performance.
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