Started playing as right winger or sometimes in the middle of the park but now a defender, born in the current capital of Ghana but raised in the former capital of Gold Coast now Ghana. Fobi is a right footed player who now plays at the right side of the defense and at times in central defense.
He was the captain of the Black Starlets; the national male under-17 football team that was disqualified by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) for using an unqualified player in one of their African Youth Championship (U-17) qualifier game against Cameroon in 2014.
Our Ghana Rising Stars Series curator STAK SOTTIE caught up with Kinsley Fobi who is now the captain of the national under-20 team; the Black Satellites in Prampram in an exclusive chat about how he started playing football, his education, professional career as a footballer, the 2015 CAF and FIFA youth tournaments experiences and his future.
Below the full conversation Ghanafans.com had with Fobi.
Ghanafans.com: In a nutshell, tell me about Fobi?
FOBI: Am Kinsley Nana Fobi, I was born into a family of five, my mother, my father, and two other siblings all females and am the only male. Born in Accra but I grew up in Cape Coast the former capital of Ghana and I attended Saint Mary’s Anglican Basic school in Cape Coast.
Ghanafans.com: How did you start playing football?
FOBI: I started playing football at a tender age, playing in Cape Coast and later moved to Accra with a team called Accra Sporting Club. I played in that club for some time and later moved to the Right to Dream Academy.
Ghanafans.com: How did you join Right to Dream Academy?
FOBI: Through a Right to Dream scout call Joe Mulberry, I joined the academy in 2011. He saw me playing in Cape Coast and took me to Accra Sporting Club, at that time I was very young so he made me train with that club till I became a bit matured and also improved on my ability. So after Accra Sporting Club, I was moved to Right to Dream in Dawu.
Ghanafans.com: Who were some of your mates when you were admitted in to the academy?
FOBI: Well, I remember I joined the academy with Collins Tanor, Enock Adu, Yaw Yeboah, Evans Mensah, Ernest Agyiri and many others.
Ghanafans.com: How did you break into the national under-20 side in 2015?
FOBI: For that, I was the captain for the Black Starlet team in 2014 but were not able to play in the CAF under-17 youth championship because of medical issues. I think because of how I did when I was with the Black Starlet, I was introduced to Sellas Tetteh who was the coach and that how I got into the team.
Ghanafans.com: Let me take you aback, how disappointed were you, when you were disqualified by CAF?
FOBI: I was part of the U-17 team that went to Morocco some time ago for the African youth championship if you remember, but I was really sad that they (CAF) disqualified us but is all part of life and there’s nothing we can do about it, so I have to move on and keep training because I have lots of years to play and to make something better as a professional footballer.
It was really sad though but we cannot do anything about it.
Ghanafans.com: How did you feel when you played in the under-20 tournaments in Senegal and New Zealand after the under-17 disappointment?
FOBI: We all knew it was very disappointing that we were disqualified from the under-17 competition but I was also happy when called to the Ghana under-20 team which every footballer in Ghana or across the World will love to serve his nation. Football is fun and I had fun when we went to Senegal and New Zealand.
Ghanafans.com: How will you describe playing in Africa like?
FOBI: I think is very difficult to play in Africa even though we have good talents but because of our bad pitches.
Ghanafans.com: How will you describe Sellas Tetteh as coach?
FOBI: He’s a good coach and the thing I like about him is, he knows when to share a joke with us at the right time but on the pitch no joke, everything from him in terms of training and instructions is on point.
Ghanafans.com: How was the mood like in camp when you were beaten by Mali in the World Cup in New Zealand?
FOBI: Our target was to get to the semifinals and then we take it from there, but things didn’t work out the way we wanted it. Everybody was really sad that day and some of the players we crying and all of that and that shows how we love our Motherland Ghana.
Ghanafans.com: What is the latest on your club football?
FOBI: After the world cup, I went for trails in Udinese in Italy around December last year and by God’s Grace, I did really well and was picked. Well you know the president of Udinse have three clubs, which is Granada in Spain, Watford in England and Udinese in Italy, but am now a Granada player so expect my Granada jersey soon.
Ghanafans.com: Which player serves as your role model as defender?
FOBI: Hmmmm, for my role model, I will say I have two people, Zabaleta of Manchester City/Argentina and Dani Alves of Barcelona/Brazil.
Ghanafans.com: Give me your best eleven players from your generation so far, from U-17 and U-20?
FOBI: This is will be a little bit difficult but let me try. Kwame Baah, Defenders- Kinsley Fobi, Patrick Asmah, Emmanuel Ntim, Joeph Aidoo, mifielders- Godfred Donsah, Abass Issah, Yaw Yeboah, attackers- Thomas Agyepong, Clifford Aboaye and Jonah Osabutey.
Ghanafans.com: Finally, what do you think about age cheating in football?
FOBI: Do players cheat about their ages? Well I don’t know anything of such so I can’t say anything about it.