International Football Federation of History and Statistics’s Africa club of the century, Asante Kotoko SC was officially founded 85 years ago on Friday August, 31 1935.
Tracing the history of the club to the colonial days of Ghana, formerly called Gold Coast, renowned sports historian, Bright Yeboah Taylor of Kumasi based Pure FM has given a narration of how the club which is arguably the biggest club in the country came into being.
According to his narration, the foundation of the club was laid by one Opanin Kwasi Kuma, who was a professional driver.
Read his narration below:
Kwasi Kuma was a native of Nyankyereneaase near Kumasi in the Ashanti Region, a driver to an English man and Military officer, Colonel Ross.
There was a man called Mr. Kwasi Kumah, a driver in the capital city, Accra. He was the personal driver to Colonel Ross, the head of the Military in the 1930’s. The Colonel was very passionate about football even before he came to Ghana from the UK and he was an Arsenal fan.
Though the AME Zion church was organizing some football matches in the Ashanti Kingdom, it was still not enough to be called a football team.
In 1924, Opanin Kwasi Kuma drove the Colonel to go and watch a match between Accra Hearts of OaK and Standfast FC for the ‘Guggisberg Shield//Cup’ where Hearts of Oak won the match by 2-1.
Kwasi Kuma upon coming to Kumasi for the Christmas celebration decided to also form a football club with his ‘electrician’ friend called Lawrence Yaw Asamoah to replicate what he saw in Accra when he was with the Colonel.
Before he came to Kumasi for the holidays, he told his boss that he wanted to establish a football club in his hometown so the Colonel also gave him jerseys for that exercise.
He gathered the area boys in the Kumasi metropolis and gradudally formed a football club which he named Kumasi Rainbow FC IN 1924 because, Accra Hearts of Oak, the club he had admired in the capital city had the rainbow colours in their flag.
So after the club had undergone several changes for more than 10 years, The ‘Achepemehene’ ( A sub-chief in the Ashanti Kingdom) appealed to Nana Agyeman Prempeh, the ruler to form a football club so they can use the club to showcase the emblem of the Ashanti Kingdom because there were no wars for them to showcase their great power.
So they decided to use Kwasi Kuma’s Kumasi Rainbow FC which was now called Mighty Atoms to form a club for the Asante state.
So on Friday, August 31, 1935, the club was renamed from Mighty Atoms to Kumasi Asante Kotoko SC.
The following people were appointed to led the new club Asante Kotoko in 1935.President, Mr. James Darkwa, Mr. John Darkwa- Treasurer, Mr. John S.K Osei- Secretary and first coach Teacher Frimpong.
See photos of some pioneers of Asante Kotoko below: