Kasim Adams is excited to reach new heights with TSG Hoffenheim, although it may not have seemed like it today in the Austrian training camp, "I've never done anything like that before and I must admit, I was a bit scared," said the 23-year-old, directly after experiencing some dare-devil moments with the players and coaching staff in the tree-top adventure park nicknamed "The Witch's Cauldron".
On the pitch however, the 6'2 defender knows no such fear. Whilst at Young Boys Bern, which is where he became a Swiss champion this year, he set himself apart with his robust style of play and his good technique. "He has a tremendous physique, he is an extraordinary athlete and a great footballer," says Alexander Rosen, who guided the Ghanaian to Hoffenheim.
Adams and the number 15 shirt
TSG sports director once again explained the background behind the most recent newcomer's name, who in the past has been known as both Kasim Nuhu and Kasim Adams. At Hoffenheim, his surname "Adams" reads above the number 15 on the back of his shirt, because "Nuhu", according to Rosen, is actually his grandfather's name and therefore counts as an additional name."
Adams now wants to make a name for himself in Germany. He's known about TSG Hoffenheim's name for a while now, as he has been following the Bundesliga since his youth back in Accra (Ghana). Moving to TSG has been "a dream come true". "It was always a main aim of mine to play in Germany. It's unbelievable for me. The stadia are always full, the atmosphere is great and the games will be shown in my hometown. Many famous Ghanaian footballers have played in the Bundesliga, which is why it's so popular."
Tips from Isaac Vorsah
Before the move to Hoffenheim, he didn't just talk to Julian Nagelsmann and Alexander Rosen, he also asked his fellow countryman Isaac Vorsah about the advantages of TSG. The now 30-year-old has racked up 93 Bundesliga appearances for TSG between 2008 and 2012 and still has fond memories of that time. "He only spoke positively about the club and gave me a good feeling about it, but I got the same feeling after the meeting with Julian Nagelsmann anyway."
The conversation with head coach impressed the defender, "We spoke quite intensively. It's a very good club, that wants to play nice and successful football. Hoffenheim is a very good step for me.
Objective: To be a regular starter and to speak German
From the start of his footballing career in Ghana, to Spanish clubs CD Leganés and RCD Mallorca, then to Swiss club Young Boys Bern, it is now time for a new challenge, including an adjustment to his footballing style. "I'm going to change my playing style in order to assimilate Hoffenheim's style, as they normally play 3-5-2. I'll do my best, to help the team and to adapt quickly."
To speed up the adaptation process, he is currently working hard to learn German. After two years in Bern, he is able to understand it a bit but still feels more comfortable using English. But the 23-year-old shows great ambition. "It's difficult because often English and Spanish words come into my head when I want to say something. But next year, maybe I'll be able to give all my interviews in German."