27 Jan

Time for Accra-native Roy Boateng to Shine in the MLS

On 11 January 2019, Accra-born Roy Boateng was selected at 16th overall by the New York Red Bulls in the 2019 MLS SuperDraft, just ten days before the Ghanaians 23rd birthday.

However, Boateng is yet to make an appearance for the New York Red Bulls, remaining in the New York Red Bulls II roster to compete in the USL Championship

It appears as though Boateng has to put in a strong showing this season if he is to make it into the MLS squad and perhaps even contend for a place in the Ghana national team set-up.
 
A troubled first season in the MLS
 
Taken in the first round of the 2019 MLS SuperDraft, Roy Boateng was one of the finest defenders coming in from the Big West Conference. In fact, over a four-year span with UC Davis, Boateng started 81 of 84 possible games, landing the Big West Defensive player of the year title twice.
 
The 62, 195lbs centre-back was the Red Bulls first selection of the draft: a privilege that they acquired in a trade with FC Cincinnati ,also reeling in the 25th overall pick for $100,000 in general allocation money.
 
While Boateng looked strong and eager to develop in training, the Ghanaians chances were limited in his rookie campaign due to him sustaining a long-term injury.
 
He may have missed much of last season, but now the defender must step up his game and take the opportunity presented by his lofty MLS draft pick as well as the situation with the Ghanaian national team
 
Opportunities for all in the Ghana national team
 
After dropping out of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in the round of 16 to Tunisia on penalties, it was expected that there would be a shakeup with the coaching staff. However, instead of perhaps changing the head coach or encouraging different selections, the GFA uprooted everything: all national team coaches at all levels were removed. Charles CK Akonnor has since been given the reins of the Black Stars.
 
This leaves the door open for a whole new philosophy to be introduced and will perhaps allow Roy Boateng to get a look, should he progress to the MLS squad of the New Jersey-based club that drafted him.
 
If a new ethos comes into the Ghanaian national team, given the existing talent in the top divisions as well as budding talents like
 
Boateng in the USA, its possible that Ghana could eventually become a highly-rated team to make it to the knockout stages, and as the Unibet bonus in NJ & PA is very generous for new customers to the sportsbook, NYRB fans might just end up backing the young defender and his national team.
 
Were a long way out from the 2022 World Cup, but Ghana arent exactly favoured by the experts.
Just as far as African nations go, Algeria, Egypt, Cote dIvoire, Morocco, Nigeria, Senegal, and Tunisia are ahead of Ghana in the odds. A revamp is needed, and it might just help Ghana go deep into the competition.
 
If Roy Boateng wants any chance at being involved in the 2022 World Cup for his national team, the centre-back will need to step-up this season. Hes being considered a worth a shot option from the reserve team by NYRB fans, but the clock is certainly ticking

 

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