Nii Adjei deserves the MVP award
Posted on: Mon Jun 04, 2012
If there is any Kumasi Asante Kotoko player who deserves great commendation for his unalloyed services to the club in the last five seasons, it is Daniel Nii Adjei. Since signing for the club in the second half of the 2006/2007 season, the midfielder has been more consistent in the team’s matches than any other player in the Porcupine family.
A comprehensive compilation of matches played by Kotoko players in the last six seasons is yet to be completed but so far, that statistical work puts the former Norchip player in the lead. I would not want to dwell much on that since it is a yet to be completed work but for the purposes of this article, it is important to state that this season, Daniel Nii Adjei featured in 29 of out the 30 league matches. He started 27 times and missed just a game through yellow card suspension.
Nii Adjei also scored five of the 43 goals recorded by the team. He generally contributed immensely to the sterling performance that led Kumasi Asante Kotoko to their 21st league title triumph. This write-up is not to extol Daniel Nii Adjei thereby ignoring the positive and massive contributions his teammates also made. I am rather taking a closer look at the highly talented midfielder’s performance in the Kotoko setup while justifying why he deserves to be named both as Kotoko’s player of the season and also as the Premier League Board’s Most Valuable Player.
Last week, the Premier League Board (PLB) launched the upcoming Glo Premier League Awards Night at the Ghana Football Association secretariat in Accra. Of the 12 categories of awards to given at the event in Kumasi on June 16, Kumasi Asante Kotoko players and officials were named in six. Not surprisingly Daniel Nii Adjei emerged as a nominee in the Most Valuable Player (MVP) category alongside Edubiase FC’s Emmanuel Baffour and Berekum Chelsea’s Emmanuel Clottey.
There has since been a lot of applause especially from Kotoko fans to the Premier League Board and the Ghana Football Association (GFA) for at least recognizing for the first time that Daniel Nii Adjei deserves to be nominated for that top award. We should look forward to the Kotoko midfielder’s crowning as the MVP at next week Saturday’s event for two strong reasons.
The first reason is that, apart from being consistent, in this context, being regularly selected by Coach Maxwell Konadu for 29 league matches, the workaholic midfielder’s performance was excellent in the matches he was fielded. I did not watch every Kotoko league encounter this season. However, of the 22 matches that I covered, Nii Adjei performed to expectation.
Talk of his tackles, passes, long range shots (which he has a knack for) and his goals and you will easily agree with me that Daniel Nii Adjei’s presence in the midfield did a lot of good service to the club’s league title race. Not every player, even in advance football leagues gets fielded in every match and performs to the expectation of his coach and highly demanding supporters at the same time. But Daniel Nii Adjei did exactly that.
He is one player whose presence is not easily noticed but his contributions do not go unnoticed. The second reason for which we should expect Nii Adjei’s crowning as the season’s Most Valuable Player still has to do with his fine, consistent form coupled with the number of seasons he has stayed on the local scene. Perhaps he has been unlucky not to have secured any lucrative deal abroad, which would have easily taken him away from the Ghanaian football league.
However, for a Ghanaian player to have stayed on the domestic scene for six consecutive seasons and be playing well too, I believe it is only fair that the Premier League Board and the Ghana Football Association for that matter acknowledge the performance and dedication of such a player. Nii Adjei is that player and we, regardless of our club affiliation applaud him.
The midfielder may well not be the only footballer that has been performing well on the domestic scene. I concede that there may be other players in other clubs that I do not know of or have not heard. If there are indeed such players, I doff my hat off to them and recommend that the PLB and GFA recognize their contributions to the development of local football.
My explanation as to why these players deserve recognition is that we often complain of the brevity of time that some of our high performing players spend on the domestic scene. Thus if there are considerably good performers like Nii Adjei who have stayed and played very well for more than five seasons, it is only fair that we recognize their efforts in any way we can. I think Nii Adjei deserves the MVP honour.
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