Fans of the German Bundesliga, the premier football league in Germany, will recognise the name Gerald Asamoah. Outside Germany, it is very unlikely to that the name would conjure up any recognition.

Gerald Asamoah was born in Mampong, Ghana and represented German powerhouse Schalke 04. Asamoah initially moved to Germany with his family in 1990, and began his career with Hannover 96, before a move to Schalke materialised.

Asamoah was known for both speed and power. He became a key player for Schalke and went on to score 44 goals in 279 games and was the first African-born player to represent Germany.  He made his international debut against Slovakia in 2001. Asamoah rose from the streets of Ghana to the stadiums of Germany is even more remarkable when you factor in that doctors told him to stop playing the game because they had discovered an underlying heart condition.

With Schalke, Asamoah won two back-to-back German Cups, in 2001 and 2002.  He represented Germany in two world cups, first in Korea-Japan in 2002 and then again on home soil in 2006.

Asamoah has founded a charity to help benefit children who have heart disease. He participates in Charity Golf events to help raise money for children with cardiac conditions

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