The Black Stars of Ghana got their 2015 AFCON qualifiers to the worst possible start after a messy draw with the Flames of Uganda.The score line however flatters the star laden Ghanaians who needed a big favour from Tunisian referee Said Kordi to achieve that feat.
Here are my three points from the match
1.Fatau Dauda is not an international class goalkeeper
Let us not beat about the bush on this one.For about a year and a half now the Ghanaian football populace have been swayed by all too infrequent shows of skill from the Chippa United goal keeper to defend his constant call up as a national team player.
Whatever seems to convince the national selectors must be very deep because I cannot see it. Dauda is a reasonable shot stopper with nothing else to his game. He has zero organisational ability and is inconsistent with his kicking at worst. His constant association with the national team would be easier to swallow if his call up was backed up by a reasonable club form but even that is absent. Dauda played three competitive games in the entire last season at Orlando Pirates and yet was still considered better than his contemporaries.
That kind of loyalty should be reserved for players who show form on the pitch..Infact a look at his entire goalkeeping career from Okwahu United to Ashgold through to South Africa shows constant long term dips in forms. His presence merely reinforces the mediocre temperament and mindset that seems to have engulfed the team.
His back up for Ghana’s game against Uganda,Razak Braimah has made a career of playing in the apoplectic third tier of Spanish football. What kind of competition is he going to offer?
Kwesi Appiah will lose nothing from chopping him and recalling Kwarasey. Ghana’s debts to him are paid up.
2.Kwesi Appiah must wipe his tactical slate clean
What ever it is Appiah is teaching his team they have certainly stopped listening. Watching the Black Stars he started his tenure with so brightly is a chore these days. There is no cohesion and there is no pattern. You might as well be watching 11 strangers playing together for the first time after dropping down to earth from different planets. Just watch John Boye and Jonathan Mensah and you will understand what i am saying. The players are all saying the right things to the press but the body language and the work on the pitch says different;They have grown stale and most importantly distrustful of each other on the pitch.
Appiah needs to have a long,deep and honest conversation with his team away from everybody including the Ghana Football Association and set things right. For a national team that thrives on singing and dancing,there is certainly no joy in the way they play at the moment.
It is time for Kwesi Appiah to take his hammer and break down his entire masterpiece.I never thought i would say this but the technical advisor is very welcome right now.
3. Black Stars players need to reconnect with fans or risk alienating themselves
A call up to the national team of Ghana seems to mean an automatic pass to arrogance. Well it looks like fans are also fed up after the the drama of the world cup and the team’s unapologetic stance post tournament. In fact captain Asamoah Gyan and Marseille star Andre Ayew’s response to the question of the team’s motivations this weekend has driven an even deeper wedge between the team and it’s fans.
“The fact that we love our country doesn’t mean we shouldn’t receive what is due us after rendering services,” he told a press conference in Kumasi on Wednesday.
“We do all that is necessary on the field of play to get Ghana the desired results and I think by so doing we showed much commitment to the course of the nation.
“Most people shouldn’t forget that majority of us play for clubs with low incomes, hence can’t be compared to nations like Germany, England, France, etc, whose players can easily forgo allowances they receive at the national team level, because it might be a peanut to them.
“In Ghana there is a lot of pressure on us to satisfy our financial obligations; unlike the Western World that a family consists of the father, mother and children, but in our case it is rather the extended family,’’ he said.
“Money is not football, it is just a game which has become a job,” he added.
Being part of a national team is a privilege to be shared and enjoyed with fans not lorded.Black Stars players at the moment have an over reaching sense of entitlement and disdain for most of its fans.Unless you belong to a paid fan club of course then you are ok.
I do not recall a single public gesture from the national team to the Ghananian public. No open days. No auto graph sessions.
Unless it’s a photo op with a sponsor or a there is a benefit attached to the players,they basically have no relationship with the greater fan base.
Until that issue is addressed the lost sense of patriotism will not be found and the current “business arrangement” that exists will continue.