Juventus confirmed their second transfer of the season (after Nicola Leali) by snapping up Kwadwo Asamoah from Udinese
Kwadwo Asamoah was spotted as a talented youngster during his stint in Liberty Professionals FC, Ghana. His signing by Udinese was a curious piece of transfer activity. The Friuli based club had already exhausted their non-EU slots by signing Mauricio Isla and they borrowed a slot from Torino as Asamoah was registered with them.
Torino then loaned him to Udinese as Asamoah made his debut against Sampdoria on 11th January, 2009. He soon became a first choice thanks to his industriousness, ability to win possession and ball distribution. He capped off a superb run of form by notching his first Udinese goal in April by scoring during a 3-1 win over Fiorentina.
The Ghanaian was absolutely crucial player for Udinese as they finished in fourth and third in Serie A in 2010/11 and 2011/12 seasons respectively. He played every single Serie A match for Udinese last season and his absence during Africa Cup of Nations dealt a crippling blow to his club which lost form in that period.
Asamoah By The Numbers (Season 2011/12)
- Played – 31
- Goals – 3
- Assists – 2
- Successful Tackles – 81
- Successful Interceptions – 36
- Fouls – 33
- Clearances – 60
- Shots On Goal – 47
- Key Passes – 29
- Passes Attempted – 1577
- Successful Passes – 1301
Asamoah has established himself as a strong component for Ghana as well. He took up the #10 jersey for the Black Stars, a jersey won by the likes of Stephen Appiah and Abedi Pele. Incidentally, Appiah had a brief career in Juventus where he became a fan favorite and has played a big part behind Asamoah’s transfer to Juventus.
Picked out as one of the youngsters to watch out before 2010 World Cup, Asamoah did justice to that tag by dishing out a series of enterprising performances as Ghana became only the third African team to reach World Cup quarter-final. He was again a crucial player in the team that performed somewhat underwhelming before bowing out in AFCON 2012.
Asamoah will add a lot to an already strong Juventus midfield. The Marchisio – Vidal – Pirlo midfield was one of the best midfield in Europe last season and with Champions League football coming up Juventus need a strong back-up to these three. Asamoah is a versatile midfielder and can replace either Vidal or Marchisio, if not take their place in starting XI.
He has the proper balance of destructive and creative attributes and can pop up with an odd goal from time to time. In case Andrea Pirlo is injured or suspended, a midfield combo of Asamoah, Vidal and Marchisio can work as a solid option. He is young, hungry and already has experience of over 100 Serie A games and 40 International matches. His off the ball movement will help Juventus midfield retain the fluidity, which is a must in Conte’s tactics.
Kwadwo Asamoah is an excellent signing and signals a step in the right direction for Juventus. The only downside of his transfer is the fact that there is one more AFCON coming up in 2013 and he can miss out some important matches due to qualifiers as well as the main tournament.
All Stats courtesy of whoscored.com