Tag: Kwadwo Asamoah


Kevin Prince Boateng out of Egypt game

Is KPB’s absence really a blow to the Black Stars chances?

 

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As if concerns about the security of the Black Stars was not enough; In a further off field development it has been confirmed that  Ghana midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng will miss Tuesday’s World Cup play-off first leg against Egypt in Kumasi after suffering a knee injury. Boateng picked up the injury playing for German club Schalke during a Bundesliga match on Saturday. Tests in Germany have revealed that Boateng must undergo treatment on his left knee.

Black Stars coach Kwesi Appiah has decided not to call up a replacement in his squad, which I think is the right call. Inevitably a lot may be made of this news and whether this makes the Black Stars all the more difficult against the Egyptians. However I think it is fair to say that it is business as usual.

Boateng is yet to play for Ghana since ending his international retirement after missing the  last qualifier against Zambia in Kumasi. Therefore Ghana are not missing anything they have not had for the past two and a half years. Albeit Boateng has been in good form for his new team Schalke after joining then from AC Milan last month Ghana have enough going forward to trouble the Egyptians. Indeed I would’ve have been more alarmed if it was Kwadwo Asamoah , Christian Atsu or Asamoah Gyan who have were the ones pulling out injured. All three have been regular contributors in the qualifying campaign and had Boateng been fit I don’t think he would have started anyway.

More of a concern for Ghana should be the injury to defender, John Boye who is a serious doubt for the game. Along with fellow defender Jonathan Mensah who has already been ruled out , the Black Stars are looking quite vulnerable at the back. Their absences could have a  big bearing on the game.

Of course an injury to a big name player like Kevin Prince Boateng is going to get the bigger headlines but I would make the case that Ghana’s defensive injuries are a bigger blow, lets hope not too much of a blow though.

In the Black Stars we trust!

 

Ben JK Anim-Antwi (@Kwesitheauthor)

Brazil 2014 on the horizon for Black Stars

Asamoah rocket seals Ghana win against Zambia to advance to World Cup qualifying play –off

 

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Ghana are two games away from the World Cup finals after a win against Zambia in their final group game in which they only needed a draw. Goals from Abdul Waris and Kwadwo Asamoah were enough for the Black Stars in a fiercely competitive game and electric atmosphere in Kumasi. The match was preceded by a series of accusations by Zambia of Ghanaian gamesmanship, including delaying their arrival by refusing landing rights for their charter plane and then denying them the chance to train at the venue on the eve of the game. Ghana denied the allegations in statement on their football association website.

Thus these accusations did nothing to calm the atmosphere in what was already a vital match for both teams in the Baba Yara Stadium Kumasi.  A lot of talk before the game was whether Andre Ayew, Michael Essien & Kevin Prince Boateng would start after their return from self imposed retirement. As it was Boateng was injured but there were starting places for both Essien and Ayew.

The Zambians started the game on the stronger foot as the Black Stars’ eagerness to win the game seemed to give them early jitters leading to a free kick in a dangerous area for the Zambians early on, but Rainford Kalaba was unable to beat the wall with his kick. The Andre Ayew and Emmanuel Mayuka both had headed efforts at goal within a matter of minutes but neither managed to trouble the opposition goalkeeper though the Ghanaian’s effort had been on target.

The Black Stars nerve seemed to settle leading to first clear chance of the game in the 12th minute which fell to skipper Asamoah Gyan but the Al Ain forward’s header from an Opare cross failed to hit the target. It was persistent work from John Boye which saw the defender chase down what looked to be a lost cause before fizzing the ball across the face of goal and onto the head of Waris who opened the scoring with a stooping header.

The Zambians started the second half as they ended the first breaking through the Ghanaian defence on no less than three occasions in the first five minutes of the half. However Essien’s presence seemed to liberate Juventus midfielder Asamoah who strolled forward to put the Ghanaians firmly in the driving seat with a scorching effort from range past Mwene to double Ghana’s lead.

The Chipolopolo pulled a goal back through Nathan Sinkala but despite mounting pressure on the hosts, they failed to secure the equaliser before the full time whistle and Ghana held on to claim victory. The Black stars now progress to the final qualifying round next round where they will meet a yet  to be decided team in a two-legged play-off tie to determine one of the five teams to represent Africa in Brazil next year.

In the Black Stars we trust!

 

Ben JK Anim-Antwi (@Kwesitheauthor)

A star in the making?

Richmond Yiadom Boakye

 

Many Ghanaian observers and fans alike have been crying out for a quality striker to partner Asamoah Gyan and ease the burden of goals on him.  Could Richmond Yiadom Boakye be that man? The Ghanaian U20 international has yet to receive a call up to the senior squad but that is surely only a matter of time. He has been turning many heads in Italy including that of Italian champions Juventus who signed him on a co-ownership basis after terms were agreed with Genoa. There were also rumours Manchester United were interested in the teenager.

Boakye signed a five-year deal with Juventus last month and joins his compatriot Kwadwo Asamoah at the club after his arrival from Udinese earlier in July. Boakye began his career with Bechem United of Ghana.He eventually moved to DC United (Ghana), and remained there until 2008 after being scouted by Genoa C.F.C. following a tournament in Vicenza, Italy.

Following a transfer to Genoa in 2009, Boakye spent the 2009–10 Serie A season, playing in the Campionato Nazionale Primavera for the Ligurian club. In April 2010, Boakye made his Serie A debut for Genoa, in a match against Livorno. He came off the bench as a substitute in the 13th minute and scored the opening goal, but the match ended in a 1–1 draw.

In June 2011, Boakye officially joined Serie B outfit U.S. Sassuolo Calcio on a one-year loan deal. The loan deal proved very successful for the Ghanaian, as he scored 12 goals in 34 appearances for the club that missed promotion to Serie A via a promotion play-off loss on aggregate to U.C. Sampdoria.

His performances for Sassuolo Calcio did not go unnoticed with Juventus moving quickly for the teenager. Last season I followed Boakye’s progress and was impressed with his touch and his eye for goal. He seems like a natural finisher and with further development could be a real quality player. However we have been here before with a promising Ghanaian striker. I remember when Dominic Adiyah burst on the scene at the 2009 U20 World Cup winning the golden boot. He was tipped for greatness and a loan move to AC Milan soon followed but since then he has not lived up to his promise and failed to break into the Blackstars first team .

Boakye is still very young and learning the game. Though from what I have seen of him, I am convinced if he gets the right guidance at Juventus he could go on to become one of Ghana’s great strikers.

Ben JK Anim-Antwi (@KwesiTheAuthor on twitter)

Black Star Kwadwo Asamoah

Asamoah sees his stock rise

 

I remember when Kwadwo Asamoah burst into the Ghanaian first team squad in 2010. I went round telling anybody who would listen what an exceptional talent he is. Two years on and he is realising his potential and attracting interest from some of the biggest clubs in Europe. Initially thrust into the first team as a replacement for an injured Michael Essien at the 2010 African Cup of Nations, his performances as playmaker in midfield soon caught the eye. A combative midfielder with a great passing range and a wand of a left foot, he soon became a firm favourite with fans and players alike.

Asamoah started his professional career in 2006 with Liberty Professionals in Ghana until he joined Torino in Italy. He was subsequently loaned to Udinese in 2008, where he made such an impression there that they decided to make the move permanent a year later. This later earned him a call up to Ghana national team in the same year. He has had three successful seasons since at Udinese helping them to qualify for the Champions League twice. Gradually he has become one of Udinese’s star players along with international striker Antonio Di Natale.

On the international stage as mentioned 2010 was his breakthrough year. Having being tasked with the job of replacing Michael Essien at the beginning of the year he obliged by helping the Black Stars reach the final of CAN 2010 where they lost a close game to Egypt 1-0. Later in the year Essien was hardly missed as Ghana reached the quarter-finals of the World Cup for the first time. Although players such as Asamoah Gyan got most of the plaudits, Kwadwo Asamoah was influential in the heart of Ghana’s midfield alongside Anthony Annan.

Since the World Cup he has established himself as one of the Black Stars most trusted players. He played every game of CAN 2012 in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea in what turned out to be a disappointing campaign as Ghana failed to reach the final.

Now with reported interest from Manchester United, Inter Milan and Juventus this summer, it seems Asamoah is in line for big money with newly crowned champions the favourite to land him. At 23, his best years are still ahead of him and is ready to take his career to the next level. Thus playing at the highest level will only serve to make him a better player which is not only good for him but good for Ghana’s chances of qualifying for the next World Cup in Brazil.

Ben JK Anim-Antwi (Kwesi)

Ghana Football News: Weekly Update

This week in review of Ghanaian footballers plying their trade abroad: 

1. Ghana ends AFCON2012 campaign in 4th place

2. John Mensah Named to AFCON2012 Best XI

3. Muntari joins new teammates

4. Jordan Ayew gets game winning goal

5. Asamoah Gyan gets back to his scoring ways

6. Kevin Prince scores in champion’s league

1. The Ghana National team ended their quest for the  2012 African Cup in 4th place. They faced Mali and lost by the scoreline of 2-0. After the heartbreaking semi-final  loss to Zambia 1-0 the spirit was sucked out of the players. Blackstars should lift their head high that they lost to the eventual AFCON winners,  the copper bullets of Zambia.

2. Ghana captain, John Mensah has been named to the CAF African Cup 2012 all star team. Mensah is the only Blackstar who made the  team of the tourney as he netted twice in the competition. Kwadwo Asamoah made the substitutes bench XI.

3. Ghana international, Sulley Muntari has joined cross town rivals Ac Milan on loan. The midfielder was on  loaned out the winter transfer deadline. The talented Ghanaian has since joined his new team mates after the Nations cup. The Rossoneri will face Cesena on Sunday with Muntari in the Starting XI. He’ll play from the first minute” – Massimo  Allegri, Ac Milan coach, when asked if Sulley will play. His contract with Inter expires this summer. 

4.  Jordan Ayew used his recent experience on national duty, to come off the bench  smashed a nasty game winner in 54′ as  as Marseille smash Bourg-Peronnas 3-1 in the French Cup on Wednesday. 

5. Babyjet returned from the African cup in style as Asamoah Gyan, scored the game winner in the 62′ as Al-Ain win 2-0 over FC Dubai on wednesday night.

6.  Former Ghana International, Kevin Prince Boateng shines his first game back after his thigh injury. Prince opened the scoring in the ’15 with a dangerous volley as Ac Milan blanked Arsenal 4-0 in champions league. 

Should he return to the national team?

Here is a clip of his goal v. Arsenal in Wednesday’s champions league match

This is the weeks news for Ghanaian footballers  worldwide.

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Ghanaian Football: Andre “Dede” Ayew

Andre “Dede” AyewAside from Anthony Annan and Kwadwo Asamoah one of my favourite Ghanaian players is Andre “Dede” Ayew (son of Ghanaian legend Abedi “Pele” Ayew). The Marseille winger was one of the outstanding players at the World cup last year and although Asamoah Gyan took much of the plaudits Ayew amongst others played an important role. As a result he has been linked with Europe’s top clubs including Arsenal whose manager Arsene Wenger is quoted as saying “Ayew is a very talented player and I like him as a player”. Whilst German legendary defender Franz Beckenbauer has likened Ayew’s ability to that of his father. Such comments will do much to enhance the reputation of a player who many pundits feel is on the verge of greatness.

At the age of 21 Andre Ayew already has over 30 caps for his country and also captained the Ghanaian U20 team to victory at both the 2009 African Youth Championship and the 2009 FIFA U-20 World Cup. At the African Youth Championship, Ayew scored two goals against Cameroon in the group stage and South Africa in the semi-finals. The 4–3 semi-final result progressed Ghana to the final where the team defeated group stage opponents Cameroon 2–0. The championship victory resulted in the team qualifying for the ensuing U-20 World Cup.

In the tournament, Ayew scored twice against England in a 4–0 rout and the equalizing goal against South Africa in the Round of 16. Ghana later won the match in extra time through a goal from Dominic Adiyiah. Ayew then captained the team to victories over the Korea Republic and Hungary in the quarter-finals and semi-finals, respectively, to reach the final where they faced Brazil.

This season Ayew has continued his fine form for his club Marseille scoring twice against Borussisa Dortmund in a champion’s league and producing a string of man of the match performances in the French league. He is proving a valuable commodity for his club and will be crucial to Ghana’s chances of winning the African Nations cup next year.

Andre Ayew is a young footballer seemingly with the world at his feet who if continues in the same vein will surely secure a big money move to one of Europe’s top club in the near future. This will only be good for his career and Ghana’s chances on the international stage.

Ps: You can see Ayew in action for Marseille (who are Arsenals group) in the Champions league group stages every other Tuesday or Wednesday evening on Sky Sports

Ben JK Anim-Antwi