Ghanaian striker Christian Annan is on the verge of switching nationality to play for Hong Kong after the Ghana Football Association confirmed that he has not played for the West African country.
The attacker, who has played in the Hong Kong top-flight for the past years, is hopeful of winning his race against time as he bids to represent Hong Kong in their crucial Asian Cup qualifying match against United Arab Emirates next month.
The Kitchee striker has been trying to change his nationality since February to become eligible for Hong Kong and he since he has not represented Ghana in any official match he does not need FIFA’s approval to play for Hong Kong.
Hong Kong coach Kim Pan-gon said they were closely monitoring Annan’s situation before they host UAE at Hong Kong Stadium on October 15.
“We have already received papers from the Ghana Football Association that Chris has never represented the country before,” said Kim.
“Once his Hong Kong passport is ready, we can draft him into the squad.
“Annan is a very fast player on the flanks and is equipped with good scoring power. His inclusion will definitely help improve our striking power.”
Annan says they are now just minor details remaining.
“When you give up your own nationality, you need some documents from your native country,” said Annan.
“And as far as I am concerned, it is now getting very close and hopefully I can get the passport by the end of the month.
“It will be a great honour to represent Hong Kong and I also want to make a contribution to a place where I have been playing for many years.”
Annan said he had already built up good understanding with Kitchee’s Hong Kong internationals after joining them in the summer from Tai Po – for whom he scored 14 goals last season.
“Many of the Kitchee players are in the Hong Kong team set-up and there will be few problems in blending in,” he said.
Hong Kong need a good result if they want to qualify for the 2015 Asian Cup finals in Australia.
With four points from two matches, they are second in the group behind leaders UAE, who are on six points.