Ernst Middendorp, former Kumasi Asante Kotoko and Accra Hearts of Oak Technical Director arrived in Accra on Sunday, November 30, on a fact-finding visit to premier league side ashantigold.
Middendorp, a known disciplinarian in Ghana football will be in the country for ten days.
His arrival comes a few days after the sudden departure of Coach Momcilo Medic for medical treatment as well as the end of Ralf Zumdick’s three-week stay with the club.
Herbert Mensah, Chief Executive Officer of Ashantigold has said the arrival of Middendorp has long been discussed and planned as part of plans for international collaboration on the Ashantigold project.
He said, “Throughout the negotiations between Fortia and Anglogold Ashanti for the purchase of 100 per cent shares in Ashantigold we have been in touch with Middendorp for advice, tapping his wealth of experience in the business of soccer.
“The Ashantigold project is not just about preparing a winsome first team but creating long-lasting structures that will ensure that we do not spend whopping sums annually recruiting new talents,” he stated.
Mr Mensah said, “Middendorp has been consistently advising us on how to restructure the dormant Ashantigold Academy as well as the technical direction of the club and he is in the country to examine the situation on the ground in order to gain a first hand information on the team”.
He added, “We are glad he is here, particularly at a time when we have had to send our reliable head coach out for medical treatment”.
Speaking in an interview on arrival, Middendorp said he is looking forward to an exciting stay with the miners.
When asked whether he would be in charge of the team, when they play Kotoko on Wednesday, the coach said, “I will not be technically responsible for handling Ashantigold when they play Kotoko on Wednesday.”
He said with the little observation of the team, he is confident the youthful side will put up a competent performance against Kotoko.
Middendorp’s soccer career spans two decades, having had stints with German sides, Arminia Bielefield, KFC Uerdingen, VFL Bochum and FC Ausburg. He has also coached in Iran, South Africa and until recently in China. He has a soccer management consultancy, Albena Football Consultancy.