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01.12.2004 Sports News

Joetex seeks return to Black Stars

By OJEIKERE AIKHOJE, LAGOS, NIGERIA

...with Champions League

Former Ghanaian U-23 forward, Joetex Frimpong, has declared that he intends to make a return to the Ghanaian National Team, the Black Stars by contributing his quota to the success of his Nigerian team, Enyimba, in their quest to win the 2004 MTN CAF Champions League at the expense of Tunisia's Etoile du Sahel for the second time.

Joetex, who has been ignored since the exit of former German-born national team manager, Burkhard Ziese believes the final of Africa's biggest club championship is the right opportunity to get more recognition at home.

“As the only Ghanaian left in this competition, which is the biggest in the continent, I have resolved to be at my best for my Nigerian club. Some of my teammates like Vincent Enyeama and Obinna Nwaneri are Nigerian internationals, while the duo of Muri Ogunbiyi and Jonas Oketola also play for the Republic of Benin. So, the stage is set for me to earn a place in the Black Stars. But I know that I have to convince the new handlers of the national team,” he declared.

The Ghanaian, who is not new to the Ghana Football Association, said some of his colleagues in Enyimba even wonder why he is yet to be invited to the Black Stars.

Joetex earned his first U-23 cap under Ziese, who subsequently drafted him to the Black Stars before their last Tunisia 2004 Nations Cup qualifier against Rwanda in Kigali, last year. The Enyimba forward played in the two-legged qualifier against Liberia with a goal for his efforts.

When asked to speak about his experience at the Black Meteors and Black Stars camp, Joetex replied: “I had a nice outing with all the players. In fact, playing in Kumasi and Accra was emotional and wearing the Ghanaian colours for the first time was something I had always prayed for since I started playing football on the streets in Kumasi before moving to Nigeria where I made my debut in club football.”

The forward scored six goals in last year's campaign as Enyimba won the Champions League and also helped his Nigerian side win the African Super Cup in January. Joetex confident of Enyimba victory in Sousse Enyimba Football Club of Aba Ghanaian forward, Joetex Frimpong, has expressed confidence that his Nigerian side would record a good outing when they travel to the Tunisian coastal city of Sousse to keep a date with Tunisian side, Etoile du Sahel in the first leg of the MTN African Champions League finals, this weekend. Speaking in an interview with www.ghanaweb.com at the team's Gateway Hotel, Ota camp, Joetex said: “We have come a long way and the entire squad is already looking forward to the match. Don't forget that we played them in the same group, so it is pay-back time, especially when you consider the fact they almost marred our campaign in Aba. “In fact, we are working hard to put Enyimba in the record books of CAF as the first team to win the Cup back-to-back. We are confident that no team can stop us from having our Champions League double.” Joetex, who missed the victory party over perennial campaigners, Esperance Sportive at El-Menzah Stadium, Tunis, stated that he is working hard to return to the squad so as to contribute his quota to the team's continental ambition. “There is no time to get back to duty than the final match. As a striker, I am paid to score and my duty is convince my employers that I can do the job well,” said the Ghanaian, who had a stint with Ghana's U-23 National team, the Black Meteors, last year. Joetex earned his U-23 national team cap under the tutelage of former German-born Ghanaian manager, Burkhard Ziese.

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