The Non-League Football Paper
STRAIGHT ON ME ’EAD SON!
Veteran teams up with boy Maleace
HE’S played at the very highest level with some of the world’s best front men but stalwart Derek Asamoah says he has finally struck up the perfect strike partnership – with son Maleace!
The former Ghanaian international is still banging in the goals at the age of 41 with the aim of steering New Salamis to back-to-back promotions from Isthmian North.
And he has found the perfect ally in 20-year-old son Maleace, who has teamed up with him in north London following a spell playing in the Greek second division.
“I’ve played with Asamoah Gyan, but there’s only one Asamoah for me, and that’s Maleace,” said Derek, who won four caps for Ghana and made over 300 Football League appearances for the likes of Northampton Town, Mansfield Town, Lincoln City, Shrewsbury Town and Carlisle United.
“It’s in the DNA. The natural chemistry there is unreal. I’ve trained him since he could walk. I understand him and he understands me.
“I had Maleace in my first year of turning pro so I never really thought we would end up playing alongside each other.
“I didn’t expect to be playing competitively at the age of 41 but nature has been kind to me, I still feel like I’m 19 and now placing alongside Maleace has given me an extra lease of life.”
Asamoah Snr’s career took him to the likes of France, Scotland, Bulgaria and South Korea before he settled into English Non-League with Guiseley in 2017.
A brief spell with Cheshunt led him to New Salamis, where he has scored 50 goals in less than two seasons and currentgetting ly stands as the division second top scorer with 17 goals.
“If you look after yourself then you can have longevity in the game,” he added. “Thankfully I’ve been able to maintain my speed and athleticism and I think what I have done in the past has given me the motivation to carry on.
“I was the quickest in the club until Maleace came along – now I have to play second fiddle. I’m very proud to play alongside him and help him progress.”
Maleace is the eldest of three boys with Zayshaun, 18, and Amari, 16, also very much on New Salamis’ radar with view to joining their father and brother at Coles Park.
A former Reading academy product, Maleace has returned to England following a two-year spell living and working in Greece with second-tier side PS Kalamata.
“I was living out there for 18 months and it really helped me to grow up,” Maleace added. “It was all about mindset and my mentality right. I had gained what I wanted to gain out there but it was the right time to come back.
“The goal now is to move on and fulfil my dream of playing professionally – and there’s no-one better to help me do that than Dad!
“No-one compares to him, no matter how good they are. The chemistry we have when playing together is scary. You can’t coach that.
“Yes, there have been a couple of times when we’ve made the same run and he’s taken the ball off me, but I don’t say anything, I can’t really, can I?”