What is your name and home field location?
Yona Assah. We have a home field on Papa Playground at 67th and Haverford.
What is your connection to Togo?
Our team is one of the byproducts of our Togolese community, which has been growing since about 2005, 2006.
What made you interested in participating in the Unity Cup?
We were always looking for areas to get involved with the community, and we just became incorporated with the City. Our flag was raised on April 28, 2017 at City Hall. Togo became independent from France on April 27, 1960.
How did your team come together?
We just started to get together about five to seven people who wanted to get in shape and be a larger part of the community. Our team grew as more people joined and became more organized. We also travel to DC and Virginia and play against other Togolese teams.
What does soccer mean to your community?
It’s a very big deal for us. Playing soccer in Togo is like having basketball in your backyard. Everyone played from a young age.
Why do you think soccer is so popular around the world?
No matter where you go, somebody always knows about soccer or plays soccer, so soccer becomes a special link between people.
How do you think soccer in general (and the Unity Cup in particular) promotes inclusivity?
The Unity Cup has expanded from last year, so it has become even more inclusive, with the opportunity to reach out to many other teams and people from around the world to get to know each other better.
What places (such as restaurants or cultural centers) or groups in Philadelphia would you recommend to someone if they wanted to learn more about Togolese culture?
Visit anything African in Philadelphia, like the restaurant Kilimandjaro on 43rd and Chestnut.
What’s one thing you wish more people knew about Togo?
We want everyone to know that Togo is a very friendly country. Sometimes the politics can be complicated, but the people are very nice and you should definitely visit.