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Former Hearts of Oak coach Kenichi: I did not get same respect as the Europeans or South Americans

3:55 AM SGT 24/10/19
Kenichi Yatsuhashi
The Japanese tactician reflects on his time in charge of the Accra-base outfit in the Ghana Premier League

Former Hearts of Oak coach Kenichi Yatsuhashi claims he was not shown enough respect during his time in charge of the Ghana Premier League side.

In 2015, the 50-year-old entered into the history books as the first Asian to handle a team in the local top flight upon his appointment as coach of the Phobians.

"I did not get the same respect as the European coaches or the South American coaches," Kenichi told Babagol.

"There was a lot of backlash when I was appointed and some of these journalist criticised me, even before my first training.

"Some even called me the automobile engineer and not the coach.

"It's was quite an experience. I responded to them by letting my work on the pitch speak.

"The results on the pitch speak and I let them understand I was more than what they were expecting."

Kenichi and Hearts parted ways after one year. Seventeen months later, he returned to Ghana, this time to coach Tema-based side Inter Allies.

Less than a year into his new role, the Japanese and Allies mutually terminated their deal.

Between his two coaching stints in Ghana, Kenichi had brief spells with Nigerian side Ifeanyi Ubah and Cambodian club Cambodian Tiger FC, in 2016 and 2017 respectively.

Before taking over Hearts, he had stints with Qatar-based Aspire Academy, Suzuyo Shimizu - a Japanese professional women's team - as well as Borough of Manhattan Community College in the USA.