ayew starsThe English Premier League is notoriously hard to adapt to but Ghana’s Andre Ayew has settled in to life at Swansea in typically striking fashion.

On the season’s opening day, the attacking midfielder scored at champions Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge as Swansea held Jose Mourinho’s side to a 2-2 draw.

A second goal followed on his home debut, and a stunning performance in the 2-1 win over Manchester United in late August truly heralded Ayew’s arrival.

The 25-year-old equalised with a fine header before creating the winner for Bafetimbi Gomis with one of the assists of the season, a sublime pass with the outside of his foot.

Within no time, this natural born leader had won August’s Premier League Player of the Month award and was being hailed as one of the signings of the summer.

Little surprise, given that Swansea picked him up as a free agent.

Skilful, tenacious and with fine technique, the stocky son of the legendary Abedi ‘Pele’ Ayew appears to have found the perfect fit in a league he has long coveted.

ayew

“This was the right moment to play in the Premier League and realise my dream,” he told BBC Sport.

“I adjusted well because I came early. I had time to do the whole pre-season, get to know the players and they gave me confidence and responsibility.”

And how he responded, with five goals and one assist from his first 10 Premier League appearances.

His arrival followed a disappointing season for Marseille, who finished fourth in the French league and exited both cup competitions early.

But Ayew was a bright spot – his gutsy displays ensuring an emotional send-off as he left the club he joined as a youth after an 11-year spell that delivered two League Cup trophies and 61 goals.

As he bade farewell to the Velodrome faithful in May, Ayew – who cut out a section of the pitch as a memento – couldn’t hold back the tears as the crowd chanted his name.

It was not the first time he had shed tears on a pitch this year.

In February, he was inconsolable after Ghana missed the chance to win their first Africa Cup of Nations in 33 years when losing the final to Ivory Coast on penalties.

Ayew netted his spot-kick and Ghana’s vice-captain also finished as the tournament’s joint top scorer, one of five players to hit three goals.

Winner of the BBC award in 2011, can the outstanding Ayew become the first Ghanaian to win it twice?

Why he should win: Michael Oti Adjei, BBC Sport, Accra

“There’s no debating it. Ayew is the most popular Ghanaian footballer now, the best by a mile in 2015 and a shade above any player on the continent which is why he has the best claim to be BBC African Footballer of The Year again.

“Based on his form for Ghana and new club Swansea City, he should win the honour. He was outstanding as the Black Stars missed out on a fifth Nations Cup win, when losing on penalties to Ivory Coast, with his leadership and goals central to Ghana’s fine run.

“At club level, his form has been even better, taking to the Premier League with remarkable ease. Five goals in 12 games from wide midfield and that sumptuous assist against Manchester United encapsulate just how good he has been this year.”

BBC

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Michael Eli Dokosi is a journalist and a formidable writer with a decade's experience. He is a blogger as well who currently owns and manages the news portal www.blakkpepper.com. The site is a wholesome news platform with entertainment, political, general, sports, negroid and foreign news offerings with the tagline 'More than Straight News' because of its alternate take on issues. The blakkpepper name emerged because the site is Afrocentric and hot. The Managing Editor can be reached via cell line (+233) 0249907425 & (+233) 0262907425 and via email blakkpeppergh@gmail.com for adverts, enquiries and news coverage invites.

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