Transfer war heats up
This week in the scoop, Kotoko tighten their hold on their left-back, while cooling any impending deals with Hearts for Mahatma Otoo. Medeama, Chelsea and Dwarfs are also in the news. It's all about the mind games, too, as Hearts up the chase of several players. Here's the wrap.
One of the best midfielders of the past Premier League season was Asiedu Attobrah, and Hearts of Oak have taken notice. SuperSport.com has learnt the Phobians have tabled an offer for the New Edubiase ace, but not yet officially. In an interview last week, the player ascribed his failure to be nominated for Player of the Season to being "a newcomer" in the league. This drive could push him to play for a bigger club next season, with a potential move to Kotoko also gaining currency.
Earlier this week, the player also took to social networking site Twitter to announce his intention of leaving: "I love Kotoko fc n hearts of Oak fc cos they are de 2 big clubs in Ghana,God help dem to win more Titles"
Attobrah's teammate Moro Ibrahim has also drawn the attention of Hearts, who intend to rebuild their side with key players in specific areas rather than a total overhauling.
The left back has had a good season after returning from a horrible leg-break while playing against Hearts of Oak. Gideon is reported to have agreed a two year contract extension with the reds. Baah feels a burden of loyalty to Kotoko, whose support during eighteen months of surgical procedures saw him return to the field after the career-threatening crock. The player has since been vocal about his wish to stay, especially with the African Champions' League ambitions of the reds in consideration.
Otoo was widely reported to have been the target of Kotoko in a sensational bid last week, but outgoing coach Maxwell Konadu has cooled speculation. He admits that a clear approach had been made by the Premier League champions, but that has ended because Hearts are simply not interested.
Konadu spoke to an Accra-based station. "As for the official approach to Hearts it was done. But frankly we are not following it up any more because Hearts told us that Mahatma Otoo is not for sale. They say the player is still under contract so that is that."
Daniel Nii Adjei
In that same interview, Konadu spoke about the swirling speculation around Kotoko's key man, Nii Adjei. Ghana Premier League's MVP has been coy of his future wit the reds, and Konadu agreed that talks had to be done quickly for the former Norchip player.
"We have sit and talk to him and hear his concerns. It seems he wants an improved deal and so we will sort that out. Nii is very key to us and we can't allow ourselves to lose him like that."
Hearts have been sniffing the reds' camp for any disgruntled players who could help them in the coming season, and talks with Nii Adjei are not impossible if the player's financial needs are met.
Hearts and Medeama are hot on the heels of free agent Louis Quainoo, according to Footy Ghana. The site reported earlier this week that the former Tema Youth utility player was transfer-listed by Asante Kotoko before the start of last season and he signed a short term deal with Ashanti Gold which has since expired. Quainoo is currently weighing the offers from both clubs.
The easy-going-but-effective midfield shield of Hearts had been strongly linked with a move away from the club. This followed the expiration almost three weeks ago, with clubs from Eastern Europe wanting him. But the player announced that Hearts is where his ambitions lay.
African Champions League side Berekum Chelsea chased Moro, as did Medeama, but the phobians have won the heart of the player. "I do not want to leave Hearts," he said earlier this week. "If even I do, I will go outside Ghana. I am thankful for the support of the club and fans, and I hope we have a better season than the last one."
Speaking to Top Radio in Accra, the player revealed that Hearts had persuaded him to stay with an attractive incentive. "I understand that clubs from all over the place want me but [Hearts chairman] Togbe Afede had a long talk with me and his offer was ok."
No contract has been signed, but the player is said to be willing to ink a deal that can only be cancelled by a European club.
Premier League outfit Dwarfs have valued their in-demand defender: it's 120,000 Ghana cedis (1.2 billion old cedis; $62,000). Footy Ghana reports that the 2011 Premier League defender of the year''s ambition to move may be thwarted the officials of Dwarfs, who will like to retain his services. Hearts have been most linked with the national team player.