Players to Watch: Frank Acheampong

Frank Acheampong is a 19 year old Ghanaian winger, currently playing for Anderlecht in Belgium having recently signed from Thai club Buriram United for €1 million. Acheampong is a big part of the Ghana U20 team that has progressed to the semi-finals of the 2013 U20 World Cup in Turkey. He also has one senior cap for his country.

Acheampong, as you well expect from a winger, is very comfortable running with the ball at opposition defenses. What sets him apart is his ability to also make intelligent runs off the ball and link up with his teammates. He is also aware of his defensive duties, and provides his fullback with good defensive support. He shows a good awareness of where he needs to be positioned when defending and is able to make challenges when needed. He displays a defensive awareness that makes me believe he could be used as a wingback or a fullback if required, and later in his career this could be a move we see him make.

Being so young you would not expect Acheampong to be the finished product. While he does regularly find himself in very good attacking positions, he does have a tendency to shoot when there are better options available to him. His delivery from wide areas is also inconsistent, but work on the training ground should be able to improve his crossing without too many problems. Fans of Anderlecht should be impressed by what they see this season,. Assuming he adapts to life in Europe, I would expect to see Acheampong in one of Europe’s major leagues in the next few seasons, for a much higher transfer fee than €1 million.

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