Liberian Kid (Who started officiating Aged 9) Hopes to Emulate Howard Web

Liberian Kid (Who started officiating Aged 9) Hopes to Emulate Howard Web

Africa doesn’t produce many “bests” in the game of football these days, but that is about to change and it could happen from Liberia – incidentally!

The last time an African rose to the status of global football icon it was George Weah and another Liberian is eyeing such heights, he’s 14-year-old Isaac “Popo” Gborlee.

Interestingly, Isaac wants to be a Referee not a footballer and it’s former English Ref, Howard Webb, who’s driving the kid’s passion.


The child started officiating games at the age of nine – thanks a local football coach – and now the youngster, who’s quickly becoming a local sensation, is just four years away from really kick starting his journey to actualizing his dreams.

As per Adrian Chiles [BBC Sport] news about Isaac’s sensational story was passed on to Webb and he wrote back:

“This is an amazing story and I was pretty moved.

“I spent a few weeks in Nigeria working for Fifa in 2009 and I know about the obsession with Premier League football in West Africa, but it’s unbelievable that somebody like Isaac has even heard of me, never mind holding me as his role model.”

Webb sent the kid his Fifa kits, a copy of his book, and a note wishing Isaac all the best for his refereeing career.

He also sent the actual yellow card he used in the 2010 World Cup Final in South Africa, between the Netherlands and Spain [h/t BBC].

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