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Soccer News of Monday, 13 November 2000

Source: GNA

"I felt honoured" - Jones

The newly appointed coach of the senior national team, Black Stars, Jones Attuquayefio said, on Friday he felt honoured to be offered such a prestigious job but admitted his knowledge about some of the foreign based players was inadequate.

"It's one of the most prestigious jobs you can have as a manager, I am greatly honoured. You can't say no when you're offered the manager-ship of your national team."

Speaking to the GNA, Jones said he was surprised when approached by Chairman of the Ghana Football Association (GFA) on his appointment, since there are many good managers around.

He felt however that it was a challenge he has to take in order to prove the worth of our local coaches.

"Even though I am yet to work with some of the foreign based players of the team, like Otto Addo and Charles Amoah, the little I had with them when I was assisting Osam Doudu was a good start that we can build upon".

Jones replaces Osam Dudou, who reverts to his former position as Chief Technical Advisor of the GFA after being the caretaker coach following the exit of Italian Guissepe Dossena in June

Jones, 56, still remains under contract with champion club Accra Heart, who takes on Jeane D'Arc of Senegal in last of the Group B matches of the CAF champions League on Sunday.

He expressed the hope that both parties would reach a compromise before he signs any contract as to whether he would still handle either team or both.

Jones rejected suggestions that taking both jobs will affect the performances of the teams.

Hearts previously refused sharing their coach with any of the national teams but there is the possibility that a compromise would be reached between Hearts Management and the GFA.

"Before the chairman of the FA called me to discuss my appointment, he informed me that he had already talked with Mr Harry Zakkour, Head of Hearts Management Board and he gave him the green light to talk to me meaning their approval".

A three-man advisory group of Mr Ben Koufie, C. K. Gyamfi and Sam Ardey, all former coaches of the national team are to act as his consultants to advice him.

Jones said, "I have a very good working relationship with all of them since I have worked under Koufie and Gyamfi and enjoys a cordial relationship with Ardey, who is a colleague".

On interference, which has been the problem of most local Coaches face, Jones said, "it is something that happens every where and I would not shut myself from suggestion and advice from any quarter, since I might learn from some of them. But, I will take the final decision since in the long run it is my head, which would be on the line when the team fails to perform".

He asked for support to enable him achieve results.