Salford Red Devils are delighted to announce the appointment of Jafaru Awudu Mustapha as the first ever Salford Red Devils Ghana Rugby League Development Manager, starting July 1.

In October 2021, Salford Red Devils, along with the Rugby League Federation Ghana (RLFG) set out with the intention of creating a partnership between the two organisations that would not only see the game of rugby league flourish in Ghana, but embark on the mission of making Salford a household name in the west of Africa.

Fast forward two and a half years, and that mission is becoming a little closer to reality as the Red Devils are about to pioneer a step that no professional club in either hemisphere has managed since the game’s inception.

Already a stalwart of the game in Ghana and recognised across many of the African playing nations, Jafaru’s rise throughout rugby league over the past decade has taken him from a university graduate enrolled on the first rugby league match officials and coaching course in 2012 in Accra, to General Manager of the federation, National Team Manager and lead on the Middle East Africa Championships. The RLFG’s work has seen Jafaru deployed in schools, clubs and communities across every corner of Ghana and with the announcement of his new role, his attention will now turn to threading the Salford Red Devils brand throughout the country whilst beginning to unearth the untapped and next generational talent that lies dormant in Accra and beyond.

Salford Red Devils Managing Director, Paul King, spoke of the appointment;

“We have talked from day one of this partnership being a long-term plan, that the end goal is to see Ghanian players succeeding at the highest level in rugby league, wearing the Salford badge and bringing their talent to the UK. To do that of course, we also know nations such as Ghana need support, resource and education and the hope is that the Salford brand will catalyse our ambition of creating and sustaining a generation of Salford and rugby league enthusiasts in West Africa and further afield.”

MEA & Americas Regional Director, Remond Safi also highlighted the significance of the milestone;

The Red Devils continue to lead the way for professional clubs in Africa, not only supporting and developing the game, but also promoting the good practice that so many UK based players already have access to. If the game is to survive and thrive in developing nations such as Ghana, and if we are to unlock the next generation of performance, we need to have partnerships with the likes of Salford, to think broader for the good of the game and to truly make the sport accessible on the international stage’.

Asked about his role with Salford, Jafaru’s energy for post shone through:

“I look forward to working with the local community, inspiring young athletes, and fostering a love for the game. My goal is to not only teach the skills and strategies of rugby league but also to promote teamwork, discipline, and sportsmanship. I hope to leave a lasting impact and contribute to the development of future rugby league stars in Ghana who may then go on to wear the Red Devils badge.”

Rugby League Federation Ghana’s President Madame Storey also noted that:

“We have known for some time that a dedicated member of rugby league staff in Ghana will not only help the sport flourish in our nation, but give our young players the chance to showcase their talents on a grander scale. We thank Salford for their connection to our community, and the support they have shown to the RLFG and we look forward to the day a Ghanian national pulls on the Salford jersey bringing each parties hard work together under the Red Devils banner.’

Jafaru’s first assignment will be mass coaching within the local school’s network whilst mapping a performance pathway for the juniors, youth and adult age groups. With monthly reports circling back to the Red Devils office, you can stay updated on Jafaru’s progress by following the Club across social media.

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