Ghana Football Association (GFA) spokesmanRandy Abbey may be looking elsewhere for a new job following the dramatic changes that have acompanied the outright sale of Kessben FC of which he was the chief executive, to Medeama FC.
His fellow employee at the club, Coach Bashir Hayford, is, however, in talks with the new management stay with the new team.
Businessman Moses Armah, who was the pillar behind Medeama FC in the Division One League, last Thursday purchased Kessben for $600,000, and immediately began structural changes that have affected the hierarchy of the Kessben staff.
Randy who joined Kessben from Hearts of Oak will now need a new constituency to return to the GFA Executive Committee where he has also assumed responsibility in the Emergency Committee.
With the GFA elections in sight following the launch of campaign bids from various fronts, Randy’s switch to another club appears imminent now that his status at Kessben has been nullified.
Businessman and football administrator, Kwabena Kesse, who sold Kessben’s premiership status to Medeama FC said he took that decision because “it is crazy to run a premier club in Ghana.
“After three years of participating in the Premier League, I realised I was in the wrong business. I was not getting returns on my investment, beside the fact that the construction of the Anane Boateng Stadium alone cost me about US$1.6 million, while monthly average expenses on the club was about GH¢40,000.
“Indeed, I was running the club at a loss because no sponsorship was coming, attendance at matches was nothing to write home about, while officialdom at the FA also frustrated us with questionable decisions,” Mr Kesse, the founder and president of Kessben FC, told the Graphic Sports in an interview in Kumasi last Sunday.
He further indicated that support from Asanteman was not forthcoming as some erroneously believed he formed the club to challenge traditional giants, Kumasi Asante Kotoko.
Under the sale deal, the premiership status, players and one bus belonging to Kessben were transferred to Medeama.
The Anane Boateng Stadium, however, remains the property of the former premiership side, and Mr Kesse said he intended to run an internationally-recognised academy at the stadium.
He, however, said he did not sell the club because he was broke. “Far from that. We had 10 businesses in the Group (Kessben Group of Companies) and if we saw that one was running at a loss, there was every reason to dispose of it.”
Following the sale, the Tarkwa-based Division One side which has taken over the premiership status of Kessben FC will now be called Medeama Sporting Club to be in line with their new status.
Medeama made a fruitless attempt to qualify from the last national Middle League to the Premier League, but with the dramatic turn around via the take-over of Kessben, Mr Armah has already indicated his readiness to undertake a journey that would make Medeama one of the giants in the elite division.
Mr Kesse said he had asked Medeama to use the Anane Boateng Stadium for their home matches if they so wished, “but it appears they want to play at Tarkwa”.
Other sources said Medeama planned to use the Sekondi Stadium in the interim while they renovated the Tarkwa Park.
Mr Kesse, who holds a master’s degree in finance, said he had a lot of respect for people like Alhaji Karim Gruzah for managing to carry his club, King Faisal, through in the midst of the challenges in running a club with a handful of supporters.
“All these years we managed to sell only two players and you can surely see how we suffered to get funds to run the club.
“Today, even Asante Kotoko and Hearts of Oak who have large following are running at a loss, so you can guess what the smaller clubs are going through,” he observed.
Kessben FC started as an academy in 2001, and within five years managed to go through the Third, Second and First divisions to qualify for premiership.
Mr Kesse built the 25,000 all-seater Anane Boateng Stadium as the home grounds of the club, and recruited a number of quality players, including 2007 FIFA Under-17 top scorer, Ransford Osei, for the side.
He, however, believed that with the Ghanaian premiership, “you only think about how to survive rather than selling players to build your financial base. With all these, how can a small club like Kessben survive?”
Mr Kesse indicated that he was not leaving football completely, and hoped to make a strong impact with the academy he planned to set up.