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Soccer News of Tuesday, 18 June 2002


RTU's Hamza joins Kotoko

Barely a month after pulling a surprise with the acquisition of King Faisal?s deadly striker, Frank Osei, Kumasi Asante Kotoko has yet again entered the poaching market and secured the services of Real Tamale United captain, Mohammed Hamza on a loan deal.

Hamza moved to Kumasi yesterday after featuring for RTU against Liberty Professionals last Sunday and the news is that he is on loan to Kumasi Asante Kotoko up to the end of the current league season.

Kotoko Chief Executive Officer, Herbert Mensah who sealed the deal with officials of the Tamale club late last week said Hamza?s move was the culmination of months of negotiations.

Mensah said Kotoko set its eyes on the dependable utility player with several national caps right at the end of the 2001 season but the African Cup of Nations tournament and a purported move to a foreign club conspired to slow down the negotiations. He said Hamza would add an extra verve to an already solid side, noting, "we can never rest on our oars until we have conquered all we survey.

The Kotoko boss thanked Messrs Ibrahim Adam and Adam Munkaila of RTU for the professional manner they handled the negotiations.

Hamza?s pedigree is not in doubt, having featured for RTU for close to eight years right after his colts days. He has featured for the national Under-17, Under-20, Under-23 and the Black Stars. He captained the Under-20 side to win the African Youth tournament held in Ghana in 1999 and was in the Black Stars squad that took part in the CAN 2002 tournament in Mali even though he sat on the bench throughout.

Though naturally a midfielder, Hamza is also comfortable in a host of defensive positions and was a left full back for the Under-20 side during the era of Italian Guiseppe Dossena. His addition to the Kotoko side is definitely going to offer Ian Porterfield an extra midfield or defence option.

Hamza brings to three the number of possible additions to the African Cup Winners squad. Kotoko has up till the end of July to register four more players and the likely candidates include Frank Osei, Abass Inusah and now Mohammed Hamza.