Sports Features of Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Source: Raymond Yeboah

Black Stars players are symbols of ungratefulness and unpatriotism

Every football nation could boast of great number of professional players and Ghana as a nation, have also produced a great number of such prima donnas.

The core of the Black Stars team, if not all, had their professional bows in Ghana’s elite league division. The national team must be a symbol of respect and unlimited patriotism from such players. Football players are no doubt like every worker, they gain from their talent but as every worker's salary can be negotiable so are that of players. Again, every developing country, pay the salary of their workers according to their size so the Black Stars cannot be any different from this treatment.

I thank the Sports Ministry for rejecting the budget the FA placed before them concerning the money involved in Black Stars’ 2013 Africa Cup of Nations preparations. If another West African country like lvory Coast’s senior national team players could waive their winning bonuses, if a developed country like Germany has her players receiving a fixed amount of 10,000 Dollars in all competitions and Zambia received only $10,000 wining bonus for annexing the 2012 Nations’ Cup, why can't Black Stars players do same for the love of the country?

$17,000 as appearance fee, $15,000 for each group match win, for a tournament that is not worth even 2 million Dollars as prize money is an insult to a nation that is gradually gaining her root.

GFA President, Kwasi Nyantakyi should go back with his budget and educate the players that wearing the national team colours is not for money but pride, love and patriotism. Japanese female team were awarded a price of just a watch for winning a whole FIFA Women’s World Cup, it is not for the fact that they were hit by Tsunami disaster so they were broke. There must be a massive education by all stakeholders of the game, particularly old footballers who sacrificed their talent for the love of this country to all this current squad who play just for money. When love for money is the focus of a team, the quest for victory will be lost because it takes patriotism for a country to win a major tournament. If the players are still adamant on collecting this above mentioned amount before they take part in the competition, no problem but they shouldn't also complain if they get unfavoured criticism from the media on non-performance.

I would entreat the Sports Ministry to task them after paying this amount that, nothing apart from coming home with the trophy would pacify Ghanaian fans. They should be treated like all other labourers who account for their wages.

I over-heard the FA Communication Director, Saani Daara defending his employers on this issue. I won’t blame him because they will all benefit from the budget when approved in the name of per diem. We only need the trophy if all these bonuses are going to be paid to the players.

I am done.