Football just like any other Sport needs patience and support but some talents have perished because of little or no efforts to drive it forward.
In most African countries, some parents block the toddlers from relishing their hidden talents but after watching what the Youngsters are capable of they decide to give it a chance.
Kakooza Ashraf is one of the victims of such scenarios but he never gave up on his dreams that he kept on convincing his then unsupportive Dad to think otherwise.
Despite his size, Kakooza a product of the FUFA Juniors League, is a nightmare for defenders as he has that eye for goal coupled with trickery infront of the goal.
Born on 31st December 1998 to Mr Abbey Ssempijja Shaban and Miss Christine Nabulya, Kakooza disclosed his football journey in an exclusive interview with The SportsNation.
He kicked off his football journey in 2007 at Future Talent Academy in Kawempe due to his passion for the Sport.
“I started football in 2007 because I had passion for the game at Future Talent Academy in Kawempe,” he opened up.
Kakooza who plays for Buganda Regional League side Young Simba faced a number of challenges at the birth of his career just like any other player.
“I lacked support from my dad but my mum was very supportive.
“But later when my dad watched me playing for the first time, he was impressed with my performance and since then he started supporting me.
“I don’t recall the team we were playing but the game ended 2-1 in our favour and I scored the winning goal, so that moment made him proud and changed his mindset.”
Kakooza who is nicknamed ‘Santos‘ explains reason behind his nickname:
“I remember I was in form two and our teacher could give us an English textbook”.
“On page 148-149, there was a story about Cristiano Ronaldo Dos Santos Aveiro that I liked reading everytime we were given the textbook and that’s how I got that nickname ‘Santos’.
He attended Bombo Common Primary School before joining Lukole SS, Kawempe High and Kakungulu High School for his O & A level.
“My best moment is the day I scored a 90th minute winning goal for Kakungulu High School against Timuna High School in Nakaseke in the Semi final of the Buganda Cup and we won the match 1-0 in 2017 though the tournament was later on cancelled.
“My impressive performance for UPDF and Express Juniors Teams in the U17 and U18 Juniors League is another pick of my career”.
His summon to the Uganda Cubs is the biggest highlight of his career after netting for fun in the Juniors League.
“I was once called to the Uganda National team U17 and it was a dream come true”.
“My dream is to play professional football and reward my mum because she supported me from day one”.
Kakooza was inspired by a number of international footballers but locally he names Vipers forward Yunus Sentamu as his role model.
“My role models are Cristiano Ronaldo Dos Santos Aveiro, Joao Felix and Antoine Griezmann while locally is Yunus Sentamu”.
Name: Kakooza Ashraf AKA Santos
Date of Birth: 31st December 1998
Parents: Mr. Abbey Ssempija Shaban & Mrs. Christine Nabulya.
Education Background: Bombo Common Primary School, Lukole SS, Kawempe High, Kakungulu High School.
Football Career: Future Talent Academy (2007), UPDF Juniors Team (2016-2017), Express JT (2018-2019), Young Simba (2019 to-date)
Role Models: Yunus Sentamu (Local), Cristiano Ronaldo, Joao Felix & Antoine Griezmann (International).