Free-man Bonsu steering Kotoko wheel

ON October 6 2017, Ghanaians woke up to a sad story. Midfielder Kwame Bonsu has been sentenced to a two-year jail term by a court in Sweden for allegedly assaulting his partner in 2015. Then on the books of Swedish side Gefle IF, his contract was terminated.

However, after 11-months behind bars, Bonsu, 24, was released. A new beginning awaited the talented midfielder who left the shores of Ghana for pastures anew in 2013. His destination was Sweden. Heart of Lions, his then local side loaned him out to FC Rosengard. From Rosengard, he moved to Hällevik joining Mjällby AIF for the 2014/15 season. His exploits at the latter, earned him a lucrative deal to Gefle, where he spent two years before the unfortunate incident, which halted his once promising career.

Perhaps, it was the sign of good things to come for the youngster who became a household name, not for his achievements on the field of play, rather the “saddest moment of my life” story.

After gaining his freedom, Bonsu returned to his native Ghana. He received an emotion-filled welcome in his city of birth, Kumasi, where his nickname ‘Conte’ rings easy bells. He was compared to the former Italy midfielder and coach Antonio Conte, during his days with youth side, Anokye Stars.

In a chat with Kumasi-based OTEC FM, he stated that he wants to spend time with his family before deciding on his next step.

“To be honest, I am really enjoying time with my family after coming out of jail because I have missed that a lot. For now, my family is my priority. I have left my footballing side to my agent to deal with. I’m still in shape and ready to play if I get any good offer from any club since I am now a free agent.”

After a few torrid months of soul-searching, he finally decided to go back to active football. His mind made up on starting all over and working his way back to the top like he did a few years ago.

In October 2018, he signed a three-year deal with Kumasi giants, Asante Kotoko. Kumasi is a familiar territory for Bonsu, who hails from the ‘Garden City’ of West Africa.

Fast forward 2019 and the player is the most talked about in the rank of Kotoko in their campaign in the Total CAF Confederation Cup. His performances have been eye-popping to the extent that pundits and followers-alike have tipped him to gate-crash the Ghana squad for the Total Africa Cup of Nation in Egypt next June.

His romance with Kotoko in the second-tier continental club championship has been fruitful. He has made the heart of the Porcupine Warriors’ midfield his bonafide.

“I have had a perfect ‘akwaaba’ to my career with one of the greatest club’s on the continent and the greatest in Ghana. Kotoko is home and this is where I belong.

“I am happy with my steady progress. The fans have been exceptional and they have given me the necessary support needed to excel. The only way we have to pay them back is to deliver the trophy for them and that is our prime motive,” Bonsu said.

After four matches, two-time African champions Kotoko sit in second position of Group C standings with six points after a 3-0 hammering of  Zambia’s Nkana FC at the Kumasi Sports Stadium on Sunday.  Sudan side Al-Hilal tops with seven points, three more than another Zambian club Zesco who lost to the Sudanese 3-1 away.

Kotoko will face leaders Al-Hilal in Kumasi on Sunday, March 10, 2019 and Bonsu has rallied his colleagues to rise up to the occasion.  The Sudanese beat Kotoko 1-0 in the the previous fixture,  handing the Porcupine Warriors their opening loss down the road at the group stage.

“There’s always something that can be learned from winning and losing. I would argue we can learn much more from losing than we can from winning. The point is that you must approach it with a ‘growth mindset versus a victim mindset’. We keep fighting!,” Bonsu said.


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