Seemingly out of nowhere, the 22-year-old from Ghana, who moved to the United States in 2010 to play in the fourth tier of American soccer with National Premier Soccer League, has proven to be one of the most critical players for NYCFC. Poku leads the club in assists with seven helpers and has tacked on two goals in 17 appearances, while accruing an undefeated 4-0-0 mark in his four starts.
Starting his first MLS season as a spark off the bench, Poku quickly worked his way into the hearts of NYCFC supporters with his unbridled hustle and offensive prowess. In NYCFC’s 3-1 victory over the Montreal Impact on June 13th, Poku came on as a substitute and notched an assist and his first MLS goal to secure the victory (watch goal HERE).
On July 26th, Poku would have a day to remember as he notched three assists in NYCFC’s wild 5-3 victory over fellow expansion club Orlando City SC, coinciding with Andrea Pirlo’s MLS debut. In the Bronx-based club’s match against Eastern Conference leading D.C. United on August 13th, Poku would notch an assist and his second goal of the season in their statement 3-1 win.
D.C. United head coach Ben Olson had high praise for Poku’s performance after the match declaring, “Poku and Villa made us look like boys. They manhandled us in the second half.”
Despite teammates Frank Lampard, David Villa and Pirlo soaking up most of the spotlight, Poku has been able to make himself indispensable for NYCFC, and has shown that it’s not only the largest stars that shine the brightest.