You are here: HomeWallOpinionsArticles2017 04 27Article 532789

Sports Features of Thursday, 27 April 2017

Source: herosportsgh.com

Kwesi Appiah: The return of our own

A familiar turn of events at the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) 2017 in Gabon meant that the journey was over for Avram Grant. The Black Stars failed to make to the finals which ensured that Ghana had to wait for at least 37 years before we can clinch the AFCON title. A lot has happened since our last title.

For instance, Abedi Pele who was a precocious member of the 1982 winning squad has given birth to children who are fully fledged members of the Blackstars and we have participated in three consecutive world cups, a feat which was considered a dream many years ago.

The exit of Avram Grant precipitated the search of a new coach and the popularity and quality of the Black Stars drew applications from far and near.

Ghana’s James Kwesi Appiah emerged the chosen one as adjudged by the committee of the Ghana Football Association (GFA) tasked with the recruitment of a new coach after beating competition from Hugo Broos and Willy Sagnol.

Like every decision taken by the GFA, opinions tend to be divided amongst soccer loving fans and pundits. While some people are sceptical about the managing prowess of Kwesi Appiah, others are of the view that he deserves the second chance especially in the light of the tepid performance of the high earning Avram Grant.

However, in comparison to elections in Ghana, after the president is elected, there is a general consensus for the citizenry to support the president.

It is in solidarity with this mentality that I believe Ghanaians should lend their unflinching support to Kwesi Appiah and the Black Stars as we go in search of the elusive AFCON title. This clarion call was typified by Kwesi Appiah as he called for the support and prayers of all Ghanaians in his bid to make the Black stars great again.

This plea has come at a time that a profound apathy has engulfed many Ghanaians but we must remember that we only have one country, Ghana. As such, we ought to be loyal in our support to the Black Stars as our national pledge imbues.

It was a proud moment when Kwesi Appiah qualified Ghana to the world cup as it had not been achieved by any Ghanaian coach. This represented a major positive psychological impact that the Ghanaian will be able to achieve the ultimate when given the needed support.

The success of Kwesi Appiah in his second coming will embolden our mental fortitude that it does not necessarily require a whiter skin to achieve the ultimate.

Kwesi Appiah’s presence at our league centers is a boost to the Ghana Premier League as it will attract fans to the stadium and motivate players to produce their best in order to be selected to the Local Black Stars or the Black Stars itself.

Being a former player of Kumasi Asante Kotoko, the fans will surely be back to offer their unbiased support to the Black Stars especially at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium.

Some of the players such as Andre Ayew and Agyemang Badu have pleaded for the fans to return to the stadium but no to avail. The soft-spoken Kwesi Appiah holds the key to this unyielding plea.

It is my prayer that God rewards the kind heart of Kwesi Appiah for his generous act of accepting a deduction of his salary to support the welfare of former players.

This would have been nearly impossible if a foreign coach was appointed. Saanie Daara’s faint call for a world cup qualification exposes the disadvantage position bequeathed by Avram Grant.

Importance should be allocated to building a squad capable of annexing the AFCON 2019 in Cameroon. There is a general belief that an AFCON title will be preferred overa world cup spot as Ghana has been strangely starved of an AFCON title for far too long.

Criticisms are welcomed but they should be constructive and decorous as Kwesi Appiah embarks on his second journey to make the Black Stars great again.

When we love and support ourselves, the bond that is created becomes impenetrable and powerful to enable us achieve our goals. Let’s support Kwesi Appiah, let’s support the Blackstars and Ghana.