Soccer News of Friday, 8 August 2014
Mahama Ayariga’s decision to meet some Black Stars players without meeting captain Asamoah Gyan is threatening to spark deep divisions in the team as the striker has publicly criticised the move by Ghana’s sports minister.
The move of consulting some ‘rebels’ in the Black Stars following Ghana’s unimpressive showing at the World Cup, risks sparking a rift in the team with disastrous consequences for squad unity.
This could undermine the progress Ghana’s national team has made on the global stage over the eight years similar to what happened to the talented Black Stars squad of the 1990s which failed to achieve.
Ayariga revealed at a press conference last week that he met some players after the World Cup without revealing their identities but it has now emerged that he secretly met players who were accused of having disciplinary problems during the tournament in Brazil.
In the wake of Ghana’s early exit from the World Cup, some players painted a picture of belonging to ‘the anti-corrupt group’ thus isolating the rest of the squad which seems to have started some tensions in the squad.
Some of the players, mostly those who failed to grab starting places in the Black Stars at the World Cup, criticised the team’s technical bench after the tournament in Brazil.
The meeting with such players seems to have led to the minister’s decision to call for the boosting of Kwesi Appiah’s technical bench.
This led to suspicion that the appointment of a technical director to supervise Appiah’s work is in the offing following Ayariga’s meeting with some of the unhappy players – a move which looks to have angered Gyan who has the backing of the majority of the squad.
“Kwesi Appiah is a very good coach. I will be disappointed if someone met some players [over Appiah’s possible departure],” Gyan told Kumasi-based Angel FM, hinting at the minister’s meeting with the ‘rebels’.
“I am the captain and they should have consulted me,” he added.
The revelation of the meeting with the ‘unhappy’ players is threatening to send the Black Stars back into the era of the early 1990s when internal fights among top players prevented the Black Stars from achieving results despite the presence of top players like Abedi Pele and Anthony Yeboah.
Goalkeeper Adam Kwarasey and Kevin-Prince Boateng were among some of the players who criticised the technical bench of the Black Stars after the World Cup.
Ghana has two big games next month in the qualifiers for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations and unnecessary discussions could damage their chances of winning their matches for the Morocco tournament.
The Black Stars will host Uganda in the opening qualifier on September 6 before travelling to face Togo four days later.