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Diasporian News of Tuesday, 5 February 2008

Source: Prince Osei-Bonsu/ George Kwaku Doe

Ghana 2-1 Nigeria: Ghanaians in US view

The Day the Super Eagles failed to fly as the Black Stars cruise on @ CAN 2008 In spite of the determination and zeal on the part of the Super Eagles of Nigeria to repeat what they did to the Black Stars in Mali and Egypt in previous editions of the African Cup of Nations. The Black Stars rather invoked the spirit that made them to send home the Super Eagles during Senegal ?92.

CAN 2008 is reminiscent of the Senegal tournament as the Black Stars had to fight back from a goal deficit to triumph by beating the Nigerians by 2 -1 margin. In the said Senegal ?92 tournament Skipper Abedi Ayew equalized for Ghana and Prince Polley sealed the doom of the Nigerians.

As we present the joy and happiness expressed by Ghanaians in some States in the US, what most fans are asking is ?whether the Algerian referee Benouza Mohamed was the twelfth player of the Super Eagles based on some of his decisions?? We the compilers of this piece know that the Black Stars won the match from the good bench led by Coach Claude Le Roy. Below are some of the views expressed by fans in the U.S.A.

Sammy Adjei a former Skipper of Obuasi Goldfields Supporting Club, has praised the players of the Black Stars for silencing the vociferous Super Eagles by beating them by a sounding 2-1 with 10 men at the Ohene Djan Sports Stadium ?Accra in the on-going CAN 2008 tournament during the quarter finals stage. "The boys and the technical bench deserve all the credits.

Coach Claude Le Roy did a perfect job by effecting good substitutions when John Mensah the skipper was shown the exit".

He noted that this was the worst officiating that he had witnessed in such a big tournament as CAN 2008.

He questioned the red card shown the Black Stars skipper, 'Although John Mensah did foul the Nigerian player the referee was too harsh on him. And the spot kick awarded the Super Eagles was a bad judgment by the referee". Sammy Adjei is therefore urging the G.F.A officials to protest to the C.A.F about the red card that was flashed at the skipper of the Black Stars.

Sammy Adjei, currently the head coach of Soccer Excellence Academy in New Jersey, in charge of U16-18.

He has suggested to the technical team of the Black Stars to shift Michael Essien to the center half in the semi finals should the appeal against the red card registered against John Mensah fail.

In the same vein, Coach Adjei said, ?Laryea Kingston be made to be at the heart of the mid-field since he is a very good fighter, also Asamoah Djan and Junior Agogo should lead the attack and something seriously should be done to stop the leaking left and the right full backs? Sammy Adjei concluded.

Nana Anane Amponsah the Asantefuohene in New York said, ?Prior to the titanic clash between the Black Stars of Ghana and the Super Eagles of Nigeria, I was 100% sure that by the final blast of the referee the Ghanaians were going to have the last laugh?. Nana Frimpong added ?Even when we were down by one goal, I was confident that the Super Eagles were not going to fly, as the good marksmen of the Black Stars were poised to gun them down by the close of the 90th minute?.

The Asantefuohene has therefore urged the players to avoid complacency, listen to the advice from their authorities. ?Be respectful on and off the field of play?. He summed up by wishing the Black Stars success in their endeavors, 'The Good Lord will always be on your side to reach greater heights?.

Mrs. Cynthia Naah -Doku of Richmond-High Way in Virginia was full of praises for the Black Stars players, the handlers, and the management for the good job well executed by effectively organizing the exit of the Nigerians from the tournament. In her joyous mood Mad. Cynthia said, 'Ebenezer!!! this is where the Almighty God have brought us?. She urged the Black Stars to go for the Gold and that the women are solidly behind them and that every stone should be unturned to realize the goal of the Black Stars".

Mr. Baba, popularly known as Babs, the proprietor of Sankofa African Restaurant in Bronx, New York where over one hundred Ghanaians converged to view the live broadcast of the match from the giant television screen he had provided in his restaurant.

Fans were seen wearing Black Stars T- Shirts; with some decorating their vehicles with the national colors of Red, Gold and Green. According to a Ghanaian, who will like to remain anonymous, ?Most Christians could not attend their regular Sunday church service because of the crucial nature that they attached to the quarter final match between the two West African neighbors?. Babs who is a co-chairman of the newly formed Black Stars Supporters Union in New York, said plans are far advanced to have the union officially launched after the CAN 2008 tournament. He added that the essence of the formation of the supporters union is not only for the senior team the Black Stars, but for all other national teams of Ghana.

George Kwame Awuku, reporting on the reactions of fans after the quarter final encounter between the Black Stars of Ghana and the Super Eagles of Nigeria from Denver, Colorado. The referee he said thought that with his intimidating strategy, the Nigerians were going to override the Ghanaians at their own backyard.

He quizzed,? Where were the EAGLES when GOD first created the STARS? Ghana "NYAME" is still alive?. This how he put it when the Stars finally did what fans were awaiting;- ?It is all over and the referee Benouza Mohammed of Algeria could even not believe what the Ghanaians have done to his ?supported" nation Nigeria. The Black Stars have indeed proved to the Super Eagles that, football is not the size of a nation in terms of its land and population,but Skills + Brilliance + Talent + Teamwork = GOAL?.

At the popular Makola African Market in Aurora, one of the cities near Denver in Colorado where most viewers trooped to took advantage of the giant TV screen provided by the proprietor, Brother Joe as he is affectionately called. According to George Awuku, ?It was more than the Ohene Djan sports stadium, as supporters of both nations as early as 8.30am; Central U.S.A time, had filled the floor of the super market to watch the match and to also support their teams to victory.

The entrance to the store was covered with banners and miniature flags of both nations, George Awuku added.

Brother Joe could not control his feelings when Michael Essien equalized for the Black Stars after the Super Eagles had taken an earlier lead through a penalty that was converted by Yakubu Aeyegbeni of Nigeria. ?When the referee blew his final whistle for the end of proceedings after Junior Agogo had plunged the Stars into victory. The supporters of the Super Eagles quickly turned into thin air and so were their flags. Their counterparts, the Ghanaians stayed behind to continue the jubilation.

Speaking from Lafayette,in Colorado,-Denver Frank Dawutey, said ?With this victory, we wish the entire team good luck in their quest to win the CUP for the fifth time. God richly bless the technical team, the playing body as well as every individual who contributed to the success of this crucial victory over the Nigerians? AYEKO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! He added?.