“I started my career at early age, I think I was 9 years old when I played for Corner Babies FC and then proceeded to Juvenile Cornerstone in Kumasi,” says the newly signed James Agyekum Kotei. “I moved to Accra to play at Golden Foot Academy, which is a well-known academy in Ghana, coached by the legendary Mohammed Ahmed Polo.”
Kotei arrived at Kaizer Chiefs this winter on a three-year contract.
“I then joined Liberty Professionals in Dansoman, where they used to call me Lampard, taken from the legendary English footballer Frank Lampard,” reveals Kotei, “The supporters gave me the nickname because I was tough and brilliant when it came to shooting from a distance.”
The Ghanaian star was signed from Tanzania’s powerhouse, Simba SC.
“I move to Oman to join the country’s professional league. I was there for a year, playing for Al-Oruba FC,” said Kotei. “I was then scouted to play for Simba S.C in Tanzania.”
Among his whole host of memories, Kotei recalls: “I will not forget the performance I gave against Al-Ahly in the Champions League this year. We beat them 1-0 in Tanzania. I was rated high on the GPS review.”
Kotei had no idea that he was on Amakhosi’s radar until he was informed by Simba FC.
“I received a call from Simba’s club boss himself,” adds Kotei. “He told me that Kaizer Chiefs from South Africa were interested in my services. Thereafter the coach called me, and we had a discussion. He asked me several questions and gave me his go ahead.”
Kotei believes there is great talent here at Kaizer Chiefs.
“There is huge talent here at Chiefs,” notes Kotei. “I am impressed with the set up because we are a family here and I look forward to contributing. After the hectic season in Tanzania, I didn’t get a chance to rest. I must fight to get into the team. I am here to play my part and truly excited to be here.”
Kotei is aware that Amakhosi will be looking at his input to get back to winning ways.
“I feel bad that this massive club has not won trophies recently,” says Kotei. “I arrived in Tanzania in 2016, Simba had not won anything for four years, and we won the league and the FA Cup the same year. By the grace of God, I hope to win trophies and for Chiefs to return to winning ways.
“Back home people wished me luck. This is a big break for me, and people back home asked me to make them proud,” he says.
On the matter of not being part of Ghana’s AFCON squad that is in Egypt, the midfielder believes that there an abundance of talent playing in different leagues and the coach could only select 23 players.
“I wish to ask Amakhosi supporters to pray for me to do well,” concludes Kotei, “It is not about me, we are a family, but one thing for sure I am here to fight for Chiefs.”