Caleb Ekuban’s fine form for Turkish side Trabzonspor was rewarded on Saturday as he made his debut for Ghana in an African Cup of Nations qualifying match – and Leeds fans were stunned as he scored a debut goal.
The 25-year-old struggled to make the grade at Elland Road. Joining the club from Serie A side Chievo, Ekuban made 22 appearances for Leeds throughout 2017-18. But he could only score two goals.
It saw Marcelo Bielsa decide that he was surplus to requirements in the summer. Trabzonspor came calling, and opted to lure him to Turker’s SuperLig on a season-long loan with a £900,000 option to buy (Miliyet).
Ekuban has since scored seven goals and created three more for Trabzonspor in 28 appearances. He has mainly played up front, but his quick pace and invention has seen him used out wide and even in attacking midfield.
That excellent form saw him picked by Ghana for the African Cup of Nations qualifying match against Kenya. A win was required to gain qualification for the tournament, which takes place this summer.
Ekuban was played through on goal on the left of the penalty area but still had plenty to do to find the net. But his low, laser-like effort was too much for Kenya goalkeeper Patrick Matasi.
Leeds fans reacted on Twitter to Ekuban scoring his first Ghana goal in just his first cap. Many were shocked by the striker’s phenomenal rise this season, given that he failed to impress at Leeds.
🇬🇭 Congratulations to #LUFC forward Caleb Ekuban (25), who scored on his Ghana debut yesterday!
I reckon we should get this commentator on LUTV, too. pic.twitter.com/tjDgeYtmcV
— LeedsMe 💙💛 (@LeedsMeTV) March 24, 2019
I liked Caleb, he gave 100 per cent every game I saw.
— Adie Hallett (@HallettAdie) March 24, 2019
Bring him back
— Daniel (@DanielGotel) March 24, 2019
I really like him but this reminds me of most of his shots to be honest, it should have been saved. Good on him though I hope this gets him over his goal drought and gives him some confidence
— The Adelites 💛💙 (@realrogues) March 24, 2019
Ekuban banging goals in for Ghana. https://t.co/XYMWuv4U1x
— James (@JamesLUFC) March 23, 2019
Sign him up
— Andrew Swan (@swanandrew) March 23, 2019
— Luke Riddell (@LukeRiddell24) March 24, 2019
Recall him now
— Curtis_ALAW💙💛 (@MOT_curt) March 24, 2019