Virginia's Opoku, a Right to Dream graduate, is late entry in 2018 GA class

Virginia junior Edward Opoku became the third product of Ghana's Right to Dream program to enter MLS's 2018  Generation adidas when he signed with the league as the adidas MLS Combine started in Florida.



In three seasons, Opoku had 16 goals and nine assists for Virginia. He could go in the top half of the first round of the MLS draft. Here's the assessment a college scout provided to Soccer America:

"Terrific player….very quick and has a knack for finishing that is top tier. He is a legit top 10-12 pick. Needs to learn how to free himself up and not rely simply on dribbling and going by defenders off the dribble. But he does that very well."

In 2015, Opoku told Whitney Reid of the Daily Progress about his early years in the village of  Odumase, where he'd spend all day playing soccer in his bare feet and at the age of 6 started collecting money and wagering it all on the marathon games he played in.

Opoku left home when he was 7 to play soccer in a neighboring town where he was provided money to send back to his family, but he didn't own a pair of soccer shoes when he tried out for Right to Dream, a residential academy, at the age of 10. At 14, he moved to the Millbrook School, a New York boarding school.

Opoku had never had a birthday party until he was 18. “He didn’t really know what a birthday was,” Christina Lang, one of Opoku’s surrogate parents, told the Daily Progress. “He didn’t know that you get presents, that you have a cake and you blow out the candles and everybody sings ‘Happy Birthday.’ He had just sort of heard about it. He was just so excited. He was thrilled. Thrilled.”

Opoku joins fellow Dreamers Francis Atuahene (Michigan), who attended Hotchkiss School, and Ema Twumasi (Wake Forest), entered the Kent School, in the 2018 GA Class. Both Atuahane and Twumasi could also go high in the 2018 SuperDraft.

The three 2018 GAs from Ghana follow Emmanuel Boateng, Joshua Yaro and Abu Danladi. Boateng started out his pro career in Sweden before joining the LA Galaxy in 2016. Yaro was the No. 2 pick in the 2016 SuperDraft while Danladi went No. 1 last year.
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