Isaac ‘Nana’ Addai Named NPSL Player of the Week
Isaac ‘Nana’ Addai of Boston City FC has been named Mitre Player of the Week for the tenth fixture of the NPSL season. The winner of this national honor is determined by a vote of media members from across the country. It is awarded every week during the regular season.
“I have to thank my teammates for helping me win this award,” said Addai. “I was very happy when I heard the news. Every week when we play in the NPSL we need to go out there with the belief we will score goals and win. We still have a lot of work to do and we can get better. I’m trying to get used to playing in a new position (wider in midfield), but I love it. I have a great coach in Palhinha and I’m learning a lot from him.”
Addai scored a hat-trick in Boston City’s 3-3 tie with the Rhode Island Reds. Including U.S. Open Cup games, he has started five matches and contributed four goals and one assist in 478 minutes played.
“Nana has played a part in all except one of the six league goals we have scored this season, so his importance to the team is very clear,” said Palhinha, BCFC head coach. “He waited patiently for his goals to come and we are pleased that he was rewarded with a hat trick against his former club and also this award. One of our offseason priorities was to sign Nana and it is already clear why we wanted him wearing a Boston City shirt.”
Addai signed with Boston City FC on October 21, 2016 from local NPSL rivals, Rhode Island Reds. The 22-year-old Liberian-born midfielder produced a stunning first campaign in the NPSL as a member of the Reds, winning the league’s Mitre Golden Ball award as the 2016 MVP, and was named to the NPSL All-Star first team, alongside Boston City’s Michael Bustamante and Gabriel De Souza.
He also finished the 2016 regular season as the joint Puma Golden Ball winner, having tallied an impressive 18 goals in only 15 games. Two of those strikes came in a Boston City 3-2 defeat of his former club, Northeast Atlantic Conference rival the Rhode Island Reds, when he curled home a free kick and also scored from the penalty spot.
Addai has represented the Liberia U23 National Team and has played professionally in both his native country and Ghana, where he arrived having played soccer in a refugee camp during the Liberian civil war.
He played for Accra’s Sovereign Academy for five years in Ghana before joining Buduburam FC and Bago FC. He returned to Liberia after the war, but later made the decision to move to the United States to follow his soccer dream.
Photo Credit: Chris Aduama and Michael Preston