Former Accra Hearts of Oak defender, Sam Johnson, says he is hopeful that the appointment of Kim Grant as the club’s head coach and director of football will help revive the fortunes of the club. He said the former Technical Director of Ebusua had the clout to turn things around for the Phobians who were headed in the right direction under the club’s American Managing Director, Mark Noonan, but stressed that it was important quality football was introduced into the “new Hearts of Oak” to make the brand more appealing.
Johnson, who featured for the Phobians between 1991 and 1995, told the Graphic Sports in an interview that the club needed to be rejuvenated and he would support any effort at bringing them back to their glorious days.
The 45-year-old former Fenerbahce star, who was once a stop-gap coach for the Phobians, said he was hopeful that Grant would transform Hearts and described his former Black Stars teammate as a stalwart who had the “magic wand to achieve something good for the club”.
Grant, 46, began his three-year contract last Saturday as he supervised his first training session with Hearts.
Capped 45 times for Ghana, Johnson played alongside Grant during the 1998 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.
Johnson wants to see Hearts invest in quality players to enable their new coach to succeed.
“Even if the team recruits all the best managers but fail to recruit good players, they may not achieve anything. I also want the coach to look at players for the club because if he is able to get quality players most of his problems would be solved,” said Johnson, affectionately called “Foyoo’ by the Hearts faithful.
He urged the club’s management and the supporters to offer the coach their maximum support to make sure that “he delivers on his targets and also meets the high expectations of the Hearts faithful.”
“The fans must rally behind the coach during difficult times and let their criticisms of his work be constructive since that is the only way they can help the coach to improve,” he advised.