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Africa Cup of Nations Qualification

Afcon 2021 Qualifiers: Antwi-Adjei inspired by Ghana's singing and team spirit

3:25 PM IST 18/11/19
Christopher Antwi-Adjei Paderborn 2019-20
The 25-year-old speaks on his first invitation to the Black Stars and what impressed him in the camp

German-born winger Christopher Antwi-Adjei is looking to fulfil a long-held childhood dream when Ghana take on Sao Tome and Principe in their second game of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers on Monday.

Born to Ghanaian parents in Hagen, the Paderborn man is among eight new faces in the camp of the Black Stars for the November double-header of games against South Africa and the islanders in Group C.

“It was a real surprise [getting the call-up]," Antwi-Adjei told the Ghana Football Association's official website.

"I had spoken to the coach [James Kwasi Appiah] quite a few times but I did not really expect it [call-up]. For this call-up, a friend of mine sent me a screenshot that I had been invited to the Ghana national team.

"I was very surprised and also very happy. I had a dream to play for Ghana when I was a child and this call-up means a lot to me."

Antwi-Adjei's hopes of linking up with the Black Stars side for the first time was almost shattered due to troubles in securing a Ghanaian passport.

The setback meant he arrived in camp on Thursday, the matchday of the 2-0 triumph over South Africa, and consequently had to watch the game from the stands.

“Bureaucracy in Germany delayed my arrival but I’m now very happy to be here. Finally, everything is going in the right direction," explained the 25-year-old.

“Getting the call-up is one dream, and playing is the ultimate. It will be a dream come true for me to wear the Ghana shirt.

“The game against South Africa was a good game and my mates did very well. Our focus now is to play very well again and get a good result in our next game. If I get the opportunity against Sao Tome, I also will do my best to help the team achieve its goal."

At club level, the attacker has been a regular face for Paderborn in the German Bundesliga, having made 11 appearances so far.

“The team [Black Stars] have welcomed me well since I joined them in camp and I am quite impressed. There is great bonding and they make me feel at home.

“A lot of things are really fascinating which I have noticed. This first thing I noticed is that the team prays together before everything. This is something new for me because in Germany players do their individual prayers before games and other things, but here, it is done together. It is good because I think it brings everyone close for a common goal.

“I also like the singing ["jama"] in the bus and in the dressing room.

“It’s something new for me with a football team. It’s a whole new experience and I must say that the vibe, the energy and the way they do it [sing] is just amazing for me. I believe the singing energizes the team.”