Godfred Donsah revealed his extraordinary story from illegal immigrant to Cagliari starlet and his Premier League dream.
The 18-year-old has already scored two goals in his first 15 Serie A appearances and is already on the radar of several top clubs, including Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool.
Itâ€™s a long way from his origins in Ghana and he told his story to La Gazzetta dello Sport.
â€œMy father left in 2007 on a boat as an illegal immigrant. We were afraid, as Italy seemed like a mirage, but he wanted work and to give my sisters the opportunity to study.
â€œHe was tired of working in the cocoa plantations, where my mother still works and I worked too. Believe me, itâ€™s tough. You are there for hours under the sun, but I can assure you our cocoa is the best you can buy.
â€œI arrived in Palermo aged 15. I trained with the first team and Fabrizio Miccoli asked me how old I was. I didnâ€™t have a visa, so I couldnâ€™t stay longer than six months.
â€œThankfully director Sean Sogliano helped me get my papers in order and took me to Verona. Iâ€™ll never stop thanking him or Afriyie Acquah, who is my best friend. He helped me in Palermo, gave me some money and even gifted me my first football boots. I was accustomed to playing barefoot.
â€œAt Verona I was in the youth team and Andrea Mandorlini gave me a Serie A debut. He said I needed to work harder. Iâ€™ve always been ready to work, as I know that I have to eat and look after my family.
â€œBy June my family will finally have a nice home and perhaps my father will return to live with my mother. They donâ€™t want to be separated anymore and I can look after them. Iâ€™m very careful and will only buy myself a nice car after my career is finished.â€
Donsah currently lives with his father Tachi, who used to pick tomatoes and is now looking for work as a driver.
â€œZdenek Zeman put his faith in me, Gianfranco Zola motivated me further. It doesnâ€™t matter if I play on the right or the left of midfield. I am happy at Cagliari, it feels like a family and I repay them with hard work.
â€œI know that in those 90 minutes I have to work myself to death. Iâ€™d like to stay at Cagliari for a while longer so I can make an impact in this team and this city.
â€œIf one day I do go to the Premier League, then I will owe it to Cagliari.â€
England remains his dream after watching the games transmitted on television in Ghana.
â€œMy mother would give me money every now and then, about â‚¬2, to see the games at a local bar. Thatâ€™s how I started supporting Chelsea and my idol Michael Essien. I have his jersey.â€
Cagliari bought Donsah from Verona last summer for just â‚¬2.2m, but his price-tag is sky-rocketing with every appearance.