A former board member of Asante Kotoko has thrown his weight behind the club’s Executive Chairman, Dr Kwame Kyei, who rebuked the playing body to express his disapproval of the team’s disappointing performance which resulted in their elimination from the MTN FA Cup.
Following Kotoko’s 1-2 loss to second tier side Asokwa Deportivo at Obuasi, Dr Kyei met with the players and technical team and told them in no uncertain terms to get their acts together and get back to winning ways because he would not hesitate to dissolve the team and reconstitute it.
For former Kotoko director and business man, Mr Kennedy Agyepong (Kenpong), the approach used by the club’s Executive Chairman was appropriate as it was a necessary shock therapy the players and technical team needed to end the club’s poor run, especially as Kotoko’s main financier had every right to demand good results as return on his investment.
Mr Agyepong, who was a board member of Kotoko during the Herbert Mensah administration, told the Graphic Sports Online that in the situation Dr Kyei found himself, where he had become a subject of insults from aggrieved supporters, he had no other choice than to be brutally frank with the players, even if his comments were deemed harsh.
For him, it was a call to action which immediately got the players and technical handlers to sit up and turn the club’s fortunes around.
“There was nothing wrong about what Dr Kyei said or his approach, and I give him total support for everything he said about the playing body, especially considering that we were knocked out of the MTN FA Cup by Asokwa Deportivo, a Division One side.
“Such a performance is unacceptable and for the chairman, it was appropriate he told the players straight in the face that they should buck up or get out.
“What else do you expect from Dr Kyei who keeps investing in Kotoko by recruiting players at huge costs and give them good salaries and conditions of service only to be hit in the face with such poor performance.
"In such instances, there is no place for diplomatic talk; you say it as it is for the players to see how angry you are,” explained Mr Agyepong, Chairman of the Kenpong Group of Companies.
Backing the Kotoko chairman’s approach to what was termed as a crisis meeting, Mr Agyepong noted that the message went down well with players and officials who immediately sat up and got back to winning ways.
Following the shape-up-or-ship-out meeting in Kumasi, Kotoko subsequently won 3-1 against Bechem United, beat Karela FC 1-0 and held Elmina Sharks to a scoreless draw.
“Sometimes you don’t have to pamper players at all. You tell them in the face and let them know their jobs are on the line.
“Now you see, what the media described as threats worked like magic and Kotoko are back to winning ways?”