Stephen Appiah Harbours Hearts Of Oak Return

Former Hearts of Oak midfielder and ex-Black Stars captain Stephen Appiah has hinted that he could return to his mother club to sing his swan song. The midfield gem told that he has been training on the quiet and he is in excellent physical condition, adding that his agents are working out another foreign adventure for him. He indicated, however, that when he finally calls time on his professional career, he would like to return to play a symbolic part in Hearts. "When the time comes for me to play for Hearts again, I will do. I wouldn't care what anybody would say. I'll use my reputation and image to attract some commercial benefits to the club," Tornado said. Stephen Appiah mentioned that his exploits in a Hearts-Kotoko 3-3 thriller in Accra in which he scored Hearts' opening goal and the equalizing third on the stroke of time - and in the process becoming the youngest player ever to score a brace in the Hearts-Kotoko rivalry. That was way back in 1996 when then 15 year-old Appiah was in his second and last season at Accra Hearts of Oak. "That match was special to me because it was the biggest match in local club football, and as a mere boy, I distinguished myself," he reminisced. That draw allowed Goldfields, [now Ashgold] to move within a point of Kotoko, eventually beating the Kumasi-based club at the top of the table when Kotoko again faltered in a 0-0 draw with Ghapoha in Tema. Appiah, who captained Ghana to her two World Cup appearances, regrets Hearts of Oak's seeming neglect of its tradition of developing young talents like himself and Ishmael Addo who were discovered at the colts level. "I believe Hearts of Oak must go back to that tradition; that's why I was happy to hear the club was organising a talent hunt for the reserve team. It should be encouraged and improved." Meanwhile, Stephen revealed that a brilliant young striker, Kenneth Okoro, discovered at the club's recently-held Talent Hunt, attended the exercise on his recommendation. The boy passed the test with distinction and is expected to graduate quickly to the senior side. The ex-national star spoke to the club's website when he led Okoro to sign a three- year deal at the Hearts Secretariat on Thursday afternoon.