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Sports Features of Tuesday, 3 April 2007

Source: Anyidoho, Koku

Maestro Of Disgrace

He may have been a maestro in his playing days, but the shame and disgrace he brought upon himself, Ghana football, and the game of football in general, leaves me with no other option but to name him the Maestro of Disgrace.

I am talking about no other person than Abedi Ayew Pele, the man whose Nania FC conspired with Okwawu United for the former to score the latter 33 goals in a single match.

If after the first half, Nania FC was leading by four goals to nil and scored the other 29 goals in the second half then what it means is that every 1.55 minutes a goal was scored.

That is the kind of incredulous record Abedi Pele’s Nania FC set last week Wednesday in that match of convenience in its bid to qualify to the premiership.

I have noticed how sports writers are shying away from singling out Abedi Pele and tying the noose of disgrace around his neck.

It is a fact that Abedi Pele is not the only person involved in this disgraceful act but I am a firm believer in the biblical statement that, “to him more is given, from him more is expected.”

Abedi Pele reached an iconic status as a player and has stayed alive on the football circuit long after he hanged his boots.

In the corridors of CAF and FIFA, Abedi Pele swings doors open without anybody questioning him.

It is for such reasons that I will choose to forget about all the other miscreants involved in the shameful act, and pick the hair out of Abedi’s nose because to all intents and purposes, more has been given to him and so more is expected of him.

Abedi Pele has done nothing short of bringing the game of football into disrepute and some of us are not going to let the matter go away with the wind and would actually go beyond the GFA to bring tons of brick on Abedi Pele.

On this score, let anybody call me whatever names they want, I don’t give a damn.

Let people call me anti Ghana it would not make me lose a single strand of hair.

And let people tell me that I hate my nation and I would be very proud to be a hater of Ghana if hating Ghana has to do with not condoning an intolerable act.

I am the more angrier when I consider the fact that apart from the personal glory that he achieved as a player, Abedi Pele did not help the national team get anywhere.

If I am not fibbing, it is during the period that Abedi Pele was skipper of the Black Stars, that our senior national team reached very low levels.

If I am asked to touch on anything I remember of the time that Abedi Pele was skipper of the Black Stars, I am sure I will quickly remember the extreme polarization that characterized his captaincy more than anything else.

Nobody can doubt the fact that player for player, the Abedis, Yeboahs, Joe Addos, Kwesi Appiahs, Armah Senegals etc may weigh heavier on the scale but were not able to achieve much for us because of the in-fighting and acrimonious relationship that existed amongst the players just because the captain was not only incapable of captaining the ship, but was an integral part of the problem.

So why is it that at a time when Stephen Appiah, Michael Essien and co are working very hard to give our football the kind of recognition it once had, and deserves, Abedi Pele should conspire to bring our game into gross disrepute? Why?

Is it not a shame that whilst some of Abedi Pele’s cotemporaries are doing their best to let the upcoming generation imbibe what is good about the game of football, the so-called maestro is teaching the young ones how to cheat?

And he has the effrontery to hold a press conference and further insult our sensibilities by saying that the match was a fair and competitive one?

How many times in his playing days did any of the league’s he played in, record 62 goals in one match day, let alone in two matches?

What does Abedi Pele take us for? A bunch of idiots?

And he goes ahead and lies to us that he was not on the sidelines when the goals were scored when indeed the facts run contrary to what he put out.

So if Abedi Pele can get himself involved in such a criminal act and then go ahead to organize a press conference and peddle untruth, does that not smack of arrogance and impunity?

If Abedi says that he has not killed any human being or does not deal in narcotics and so has done nothing wrong, it makes me feel very sorry for him.

So it is only murderers and drug dealers who do wrong isn’t it? Very warped logic if you ask me.

If that is the mindset of Abedi Pele, I am not surprised he messed the nation up during the period he was captain.

I am sure even Bernard Tapei would shudder at what Abedi Pele got his team to do.

Abedi Pele is nothing but a disgrace to the game of football and should be barred from getting close to the game for a very long time.

GFA, CAF and FIFA must deal drastically with Abedi Pele to let others who are intending to destroy the game know that if they are caught they would be dealt with without let or hindrance.

Indeed, if Marseille was demoted and Bernard Tapei jailed for bringing the game into disrepute, why should Abedi Pele be spared?

Of course, the recent case in Italy, where big fishes like Juventus were relegated from the Serie A, is also a case of the law being no respecter of all categories of persons or entities.

A crime is a crime no matter who commits it.

We are all equal before the law and so Abedi Pele ought not be spared.

This is going to be a test case for Kwesi Nyantekyi and his FA and the whole world would be watching to see if it would be handled the way it ought to be handled or it would be business a usual.

And woe betides Nyantekyi if he lets Abedi Pele and those scoundrels off the hook.

As for me, I have served notice and so whether the FA acts or not, I am going to crusade against Abedi Pele and make sure that I take my fight to whatever level.

This is not a case I am going to drop just like that and I am prepared to crusade to every acceptable level.

This country is plunging headlong into an endless pit and some of us can no longer sit and allow Kwame Nkrumah’s Ghana to die the way some people want it to die.

Abedi Pele is nothing but a maestro of disgrace and nobody or nothing, is going to get me to change me my mind about him.



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