ADOMAKO TO THE RESCUE: Kotoko Needed Goals… And Look Who’s Turned Up!
They knew, of course.
Asante Kotoko were always going to struggle to replace their prized striker Kwame Opoku, who they sold mid-season to Algeria’s USM Alger. Kotoko, until that point, weren’t scoring too freely, and Opoku was the only player doing so with any consistency.
And that consistency was certainly impressive, with Opoku directly responsible for nearly half of Kotoko’s goals (six) at the end of the season’s first round. But Kotoko’s need for goals was outweighed by their desire for cash, seemingly, and the amount offered by the North African club was simply irresistible.
In the end, the solution chosen was three-pronged and, even if unwittingly, doubled as a nod to Opoku’s value. Kotoko went to the market and came back with a trio of attackers: Brazilian Michael Vinicius; unattached Solomon Sarfo Taylor; and Francis Andy Kumi, a forward who was making waves in Ghana’s second tier.
Between those fresh arrivals, Mariano Barreto, Kotoko’s new trainer, hoped to find enough goals to fuel the second half of Kotoko’s season. Those expectations haven’t really been met, however, as the forwards have only contributed a grand total of five goals.
Three of those have come from Kumi, the other two from Vinicius (who, by the way, has already ended his chapter at Kotoko), while Taylor isn’t yet off the mark. Those struggles have forced the rest of the team to share much of the goalscoring burden, but relief — albeit from a very unlikely source — could just be on its way.
Enter Evans Adomako.
Signed by Kotoko at the beginning of the season, the former Phar Rangers attacker was around when Opoku was scoring for fun, when he left, and when the club brought in reinforcements. The latter, especially, probably felt like an official expression of a lack of faith in Adomako’s abilities.
But it wasn’t just the 23-year-old’s employers who appeared to think little of Adomako and what he could offer; a sizable section of the fanbase, too, had written the striker off as a big transfer miss.
Adomako might have been down, yes, but he wasn’t exactly out. In the last couple of games, he has stepped up and taken his chances, showing anyone who still cares — heck, even those who don’t — that he still has plenty to give, especially as Kotoko home in on domestic targets.
Adomako came up with a goal and an assist in Kotoko’s most recent league game (his first league start), turning in a great shift a week ago to help the team nick a 3-2 win in Dawu over a plucky Inter Allies side.
Days later, Adomako would prove decisive again, scoring twice in a 3-1 win that helped Kotoko avoid being struck by a thunderbolt against lower-league opposition in the course of their FA Cup title defence, securing a place in the Round of 16.
We’re not quite sure where this renaissance is coming from, but nobody at Kotoko would mind. All that matters is that Adomako is turning out to be just the sort of player — chief goal-getter, difference-maker, and star man — Kotoko require at this advanced stage of the campaign.
Now, more than ever, Kotoko need goals (the only reason why they are behind archrivals Accra Hearts of Oak on the league table) and they’d take them from any supplier right now — even if the surest guarantee of that stuff in their ranks is a man who, until very recently, was almost entirely forgotten.