James Kwesi Appiah, former coach of Ghana’s senior side, the Black Stars says the demise of winger Christian Atsu has caused a big vacuum in his heart following the relationship he had with the player.
The 31-year-old met his untimely death while on duty with the Turkish football club, Hatayspor following a tragic earthquake disaster that happened early last month.
Speaking in an interview with the GNA Sports, the former Black Stars coach said ” Atsu was a close friend, anytime I went to the UK, I always visit him, and most of the time when I was in London, he also came to visit me.
“We were close to the extent that most of the investments that he wanted to do, he took my advice as to how he should go around it,” Appiah stated.
According to him, the last time he visited the player was in 2019, when he was preparing for surgery after picking up an injury in the African Cup of Nations (AFCON).
He noted that his relationship with the Black Stars winger grew stronger before the surgery which resulted in some fitness issues and left him with no choice but to leave Newcastle.
“He told us that we should all pray for him and I said the way he is, automatically he will make it and fortunately he made it. But the strength in the legs was not the same as before which led him to leave Newcastle.”
Kwesi Appiah hailed Atsu as a player who was very skilful and gave his all to see the success of the national team.
From 2012 to 2019, Christian Atsu made 65 appearances for the Black Stars of Ghana, netting ten goals with nine assists to his credit.