Akeil Barrett: Live, Breath​, Dream & Play Soccer

In Jamaica, playing soccer (Football) with the guys in your community was almost every little boy’s reality. Another reality is that most little boys’ soccer life doesn’t blossom outside of that community, but for Akeil Barrett it was different. Akeil lives the life a lot of boys all over the world only dream of, playing professional soccer.

Growing up watching his brothers and people in his community play soccer, Akeil’s fascination was born. After starting to play the game himself, he couldn’t stop. Any chance he got with a ball, he was playing soccer. Akeil Barrett’s journey in soccer started at a very young age. Starting out training with local club ‘Real Mona FC’ at just 8, after which he played with ‘Meadhaven United’ at around 11.

Akeil Barrett left Calabar High School in Jamaica to begin his college career at the University of Akron in 2011, transferring to University of Tulsa a year later. Moving to a whole new country for soccer wasn’t a walk in the park for Akeil. Getting accustomed to a whole different culture and climate was a little tricky for him, but interacting with a lot of Jamaicans at his school eased his adjustment process. Akeil’s soccer dream didn’t end in college. Being selected 25th overall when being drafted for the Major Soccer League (MLS) was the best feeling of his life. Akeil signed with ‘Orlando City SC’ and even though he didn’t have much gameplay there there was more from him. In addition, he signed with ‘Jacksonville Armada FC’, Sweedish club ‘Pitea IF’ and ‘Swope Park Rangers‘. Now playing for United Soccer League club Tulsa Roughnecks.

Akeil Barrett
Photo Credit: Lori

Akeil Barrett: A Love That Never Dies

Akeil Barrett hopes to play for the Reggae Boyz one day. Being exposed to various types of gameplay and tactics has been a learning experience for Akeil. Even though he loves his country and it’s local talent, he loves how organized other countries in the soccer world are.

Travelling a lot throughout his career hasn’t affected his support system one bit. The support from his family, hometown and his fans keep him going and keeps him positive. Even when suffering from injuries for two years Barrett stays hopeful. Injuries like his recent ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) injury which has put a strain on his career, but hasn’t waivered his faith in himself.

Akeil Barrett
Photo Credit : Lori

Akeil Barrett’s love for soccer is almost unmatched. Even when he’s not playing soccer, he’s playing soccer; virtually any way. His winding down is FIFA, Netflix, family time and Golf. He can’t imagine his life without soccer, he doesn’t even like to think about it. Barrett thinks that if he wasn’t playing ball, he would probably be coaching it or managing players. If this doesnt spell soccer love, I don’t know what does.

Akeil Barrett got an opportunity to live his dream, so he grabbed it and ran. He encourages young boys with his same dream to never give up on it and work on it. Even though he made the most of his opportunity, one part of his dream left; playing for the Reggae Boyz. With Akeil’s positive mindset and will to do great, I don’t see him giving up on his dream.

Always Pray & Work Hard and Stay Postive.

– Akeil Barrett