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Football >> 1980 - 2011

Tony Yegola Yeboah

Anthony "Tony" Yeboah (born June 6, 1966 in Kumasi, Ghana) is a retired Ghanaian footballer who is most noted for his time at European clubs 1. FC Saarbrücken, Eintracht Frankfurt, Leeds United and Hamburger SV during the 1990s.

He is considered one of the most prominent and prolific goal scorers in Ghanaian and African football history and gained a reputation for scoring high quality goals which often featured in Goal of the Month or Goal of the Season competitions. He was a member of Ghana's national team for ten years, and represented his country at three African Nations Cups during the 1990s.

 

Yeboah scored 26 goals in 59 appearances for Ghana. After spending his youth in Kumasi, Yeboah joined German club 1. FC Saarbrücken in 1988. This move was of some historical significance, because Yeboah became only the second black player to appear in the Bundesliga, only pre-dated by fellow Ghanaian Anthony Baffoe who had been born and raised in Germany. This was a time where the Bundesliga was dominated by Caucasian players (in fact, many squads were all-German, except for one or two European foreigners). Yeboah had a slow first year, but then scored 17 goals in his second Saarbrücken year.

 

He was then transferred to Eintracht Frankfurt. In the Hesse metropolis, Yeboah quickly established himself as a deadly striker, equally adept with his feet and his head. He was the top scorer in Bundesliga twice with Frankfurt, in 1993 and 1994, and paved the way for black African players like Jay-Jay Okocha, Samuel Kuffour and Souleymane Sané. In 1995, he and fellow colleagues Maurizio Gaudino and Okocha clashed with manager Jupp Heynckes, which led to their departure from the club.

 

Yeboah joined English club Leeds United from Eintracht Frankfurt for a £3.4 million price tag at the start of 1995. As well as his wonder-goals of the season against Liverpool and Wimbledon, a hat-trick versus AS Monaco in the UEFA Cup was one of the high points of his Leeds career. Injuries (several picked up while on international duty) restricted his game when he played and kept him out of the Leeds side on several occasions.

 

When George Graham took over as manager, there was a clash of personalities and Yeboah was sold. He returned to Germany, and was still playing and scoring for several years after he left Leeds. Yeboah scored a total of 33 goals for Leeds United in 62 appearances, and is still revered as a cult hero for the Yorkshire club. He is famous in the United Kingdom for scoring many remarkable goals in a short period for Leeds United. His volley against Liverpool and his strike versus Wimbledon in the 1995-96 season were amongst his notable goals and he was a regular feature in Goal of the Month in the Premiership at a time when the Georgian midfielder Kinkladze of Manchester City F.C. and Matt Le Tissier of Southampton F.C. also gained a reputation for scoring world class goals in the competition. The goal against Wimbledon was also awarded Goal of the Season in 1995-96.

 

While at Leeds, the speed of one of his shots was unofficially measured at 96 mph, making his shots faster than Leeds legend Peter Lorimer.[citation needed] In his first season (1995-96) at Elland Road he was voted as the club's first-ever non-British Player of the Year. Yeboah left German club Hamburger SV in 2001, in order to join Al Ittihad Doha in Qatar, where he played under Austrian coach Josef Hickersberger.[1] In 2005, Yeboah appeared at the Lucas Radebe testimonial with Leeds United and African players past and present. In December 2006, he featured in a charity match christened as "Anthony Baffoe XI vs Anthony Yeboah XI". According to the organisers, this event will be held annually to raise funds to support orphanages in the country. The match ended 3-2 to Yeboah's team. Yeboah played a cameo role in the first ten minutes. The match also featured players such as Stephen Appiah, Marcel Desailly and Richard Kingson.

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