Sports News of Friday, 6 September 2013
The Ghana Football Association (GFA) wishes to express its reservation over the latest attempt by the Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) to manipulate the media by twisting the facts and deceiving the public following their inability to train at the Baba Yara Stadium in Kumasi on Thursday.
While the GFA has offered a hand of friendship by bending FIFA rules to accommodate the request of the Zambians, they have opted to report false information to the media to cover up for their failings.
The Zambian team arrived at the stadium in Kumasi on Thursday for their mandatory training TWO HOURS LATE and when the stadium authorities told them that the stadium was closed because the time had elapsed, the Zambian team opted to provoke and infuriate Ghana fans in their bid to paint a false picture of intimidation by the local fans.
In their desperate bid to paint Ghana in a bad light to the media, the Zambia team got down from their bus and opted to train in the middle of where the Ghana football fans were standing.
This move was meant to provoke attacks from the fans so that they can use this as evidence of intimidation to report to anyone who would listen.
But our fans stood and watched as they trained while security officials were promptly deployed to provide the needed protection even though the Zambians were not supposed to train in the outer areas stadium which is an open area.
Even though their training time had elapsed, we decided to bend the FIFA rules by agreeing with the Match Commissioner, following Zambia’s request, for them to train on the pitch on Friday morning as a gesture of the long-standing friendship between people of Ghana and Zambia.
In spite of the Zambia FA’s request to train on Friday morning, they failed to turn up even though several Ghana FA officials and Ghana security personnel had gone to the stadium to ensure they train smoothly.
However, FAZ has chosen to put false information out to the media and the public about the events in Kumasi calculated to deceive the public and prepare the ground for excuses when they lose the match.
The GFA reported the false reports being put in the public domain by the Zambian FA to the Match Commissioner during the technical meeting on Thursday night.
The desperate acts of the Zambian FA come as no surprise to the GFA because they even blamed Ghana for their own travel arrangements.
The GFA wants to assure the world football fraternity that we have played according to the FIFA Fair Play rules towards our Zambian brothers since they arrived here and we will continue to do same until they leave this country.
The GFA wants to assure Ghanaians that the Black Stars are fully focused on Friday afternoon’s game and we will not be distracted by attempts to take our focus away from this important match.