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Opinions of Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Columnist: sportscrusader.com

GPL: Kenichi – A blessing or curse to Hearts?

Kenichi Yatsuhashi, is a name that certainly rings a bell among football enthusiasts in Ghana, after his short spell with Accra Hearts of Oak in the 2015/16 Ghana Premier league season(GPL).

The Japanese trainer was largely seen as a ‘god ‘ who gave life back to the Phobia spirit and to some extent, Ghana’s football, as record spectatorship was recorded across the country whenever Hearts played any team.

The ‘Kenichi Factor’, most definitely resurrected the GPL as numerous football fans, including Japanese, trooped to the stadium to watch matches.

The resurgence of Hearts was only resultant, after Kenichi led them to an impressive away run in the first round in which they were undefeated with wins in Tarkwa, Obuasi and Berekum.

His departure on 20th June 2016 from Hearts, was very disturbing to football fans who saw him as a blessing to the league. His contract was terminated on ‘mutual consent’ after extensive deliberations between him and the club’s management.

This development directly affected the league in general and Accra Hearts of Oak in particular, as various forms of feuds erupted within the technical and management units which hindered their quest to annex the 2015/16 GPL title.

Despite his impact on the GPL, Kenechi was seen as a ‘problem child’ for most media men and his superiors. His outbursts resulted in his being branded ‘impatient’ and ‘disrespectful’.

Walking out of several press conferences and meetings within his club, certainly didn’t help his cause.

Well, with the just-ended 2015/16 season, of which Wa All Stars emerged victors, it remains to be seen which magic wand would project the upcoming league, cure the recent match-fixing allegations as well as increase fan patronage in the league.