Jayden Adetiba has landed a contract with his dream team, Arsenal.
The young footie star attended a five-week trial in the UK and two weeks ago scored the offer which he and his family immediately accepted.
Originally from Nigeria, Jayden and his family previously lived in the United Kingdom before moving to Sunningdale in Cape Town, and now they’re back in England for good.
The young striker started making waves at the age of three already.
Jayden first played for Sunningdale FC and later joined the SuperSport United Soccer School in the Southern Suburbs.
The excited boy tells the Daily Voice: “I thank God and my parents for this. I am very happy.”
The Grade 5 pupil says he hopes to play for Arsenal’s first team some day.
“I train three times a week at the academy and we have a match day at the weekend. Soccer is something I love. The amazing thing is I’ve always been an Arsenal fan and I will work hard every day to make the first team.”
Jayden says he misses South Africa’s sunny weather, but hopes his story will inspire others.
“Cristiano Ronaldo and Alex Iwobi are my heroes. Ronaldo because of his hard work, and Iwobi because he was at the Arsenal Academy at the age of seven and now plays for the first team.
“My message to others is: Don’t be afraid to dream big, that’s what my dad always tells me. Then work as hard as you can to chase that dream,” he says.
Proud father, John Adetiba, says soccer runs in his family’s blood.
“Jayden’s older brother spent three years at the Blackburn Rovers Academy and recently signed with Ebbsfleet United Academy in Kent.
“Our middle son is also playing soccer and signed with a local team,” says John.
He says while it’s hard work managing Jayden’s new schedule, the move to the UK is worth it.
“It’s a lot of work and logistical planning to ensure Jayden is at the academy four times a week for training and matches, but we are all enjoying the experience.”