It is every young player’s dream to play for a bigger once his burgeoning career begins to see the light of day. In times past, young players between the ages of 17 and 20 have hardly made it to bigger clubs as they are deemed not ready to face the challenges and toughness that come with playing for a top club. The narrative has however changed this time with young players now playing at the top level. Several players globally have made their debuts at a very young age with some performing as expected and others not getting their groove. The likes of Ghana’s Stephen Appiah, Abedi Pele, Andre Dede Ayew, Nii Odartey Lamptey and many others made their senior national team debut at less than 20 years.
That tells us that indeed the narrative has changed in the last few years. These days we have young players in their early 20s playing in the English premier league. Marcus Rashford of Manchester United played games for the Red Devils when he was less than 20-years-old. With such a big platform is it not enough to say that football has now changed and giving equal and level playing field to both the young and those advanced in age? It is absolutely fair to say that judging from the youngsters mushrooming in the world league these days.
However, crossing carpet from a younger club to a bigger one for a talented youngster comes with huge expectations. Such a young player needs to have a cool head, concentrate, wait to grab the playing chance and make good use of it. Enock Asubonteng moved from West Africa Football Academy to sign for Hearts of Oak in the last transfer window as the Phobians sought to bolster their squad for the 2021/22 CAF Champions League. With an array of stars at the 2000 CAF Champions League winners, the young man needs to work his sleeves off to earn a regular shirt under coach Samuel Boadu and he knows that too well after drawing positives from his debut continental game.
“I think we can draw a lot of confidence from the Kamsar game” said Asubonteng. “I've got to work hard in training every day and show the coaches that I am ready to be part of this squad. “I've got to give him that trust so he will be ready to play me. I'll be ready, I'll always be ready to play and always ready to come on when needed. “I see it that when I do get the chance to play, it's also my chance to help the team”. He told HeartsofOaksc.com.
The 20-year-old made his competitive debut when he replaced Emmanuel Nettey on the 66th minute in Hearts of Oak’s 2-0 preliminary CAF Champions League win over Club Industriel de Kamsar at the Accra Sports Stadium on September 19. Prior to joining Hearts of Oak, he was key for WAFA last season where he netted four goals in 26 appearances. He is part of the youngsters alongside Salim Adams, Suraj Seidu plus already existing ones like Razak Ali and Issah Kuka, recruited by the Phobians to build a formidable squad for the future.
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