Goalkeeper Emmanuel Kofie, a member of the Cosmos inaugural team in 1971, has passed away.

He was 78.

Kofie, who played 11 games during the team’s first North American Soccer League season, died in May after battling a stroke for almost 13 years prior to his death. He passed away and was buried in New Jersey.

His nephew, Edward Anue Quarcoo, told www.Ghanaweb.com, that Kofie did not die of COVID-19, which had been previously reported.

In a statement, the Ghana Football Association expressed “its deepest condolences to the family of late Ghana goalkeeper Emmanuel Anui Kofie. The GFA received with shock news of the demise of the former Asante Kotoko and Accra Great Olympics goalkeeper.

“The former National Academicals player was a household name during his playing days and his legacy in Ghana football will forever be written in gold.

“The thoughts and prayers of the GFA and the entire football fraternity are with his family at this time. May his soul rest in perfect peace.”

Nicknamed the Black Cat for his reflex actions in the net, Kofie was born in Ghana on Oct. 2, 1941. He played for the Black Stars from 1966-69, the National Academicals, Accra Great Olympics and Asante Kotok before he ventured to the United States to join the Cosmos.

He spent two seasons with the Cosmos, recording a 2.48 goals-against average with one shutout in 1971.

Prior to his death, Kofie was the athlete counselor and recruiter for Essex County College and also the head coach of Newport Technical High School in New Jersey.

Kofie is survived by four children; three daughters Mavis Kofie, Diana Kofie, Tricia Kofie and a son Dan Kofie, who played for Great Olympics.