Football is a game played outdoor by two teams. It is a game which is played by kicking a ball with the foot.
Each of the football teams contain eleven (11) players, that means a total of 22 players play in a football match. This game is also called as soccer in some countries. It has been estimated that it is played by around 250 million players over 150 countries which makes it the most popular game of the world.
Charles Kumi Gyamfi became Ghana coach in 1961, and the Black Stars won successive African Cup of Nations titles, in 1963 and 1965 and achieved their record win 13–2 away to Kenya, shortly after the second of these. They also reached the final of the tournament in 1968 and 1970, losing 1–0 on each occasion to DR Congo and Sudan respectively. Our domination of this tournament earned the Black Stars team the nicknames ” the Black Stars of West Africa” and “the Black Stars of Africa ” in the 1960s.
The team had no success in FIFA World Cup qualification during this era, and failed to qualify for three successive African Cup of Nations in the 1970s, but qualified for the Olympic Games football tournaments, becoming the first team from sub-Saharan Africa to qualify for the Games and reaching the quarter-finals in 1964 and withdrawing on political grounds in 1976 later winning the 1978 and 1982 African cup of nations. After three failures to reach the tournament final, the 1992 African Cup of Nations saw the Black Stars finish second.
Prior to the year 2000, disharmony among the squad which eventually led to parliamentary and executive intervention to settle issues between two squad members, Abedi Ayew Pele and Anthony Yeboah in the late 1990s, may have played some part in the failure of the team to build on the successes of the national underage teams in the late 1990s, but a new generation of Black Stars players who went to the 2001 FIFA World Youth Championship final became the core of the team at the 2002 African Cup of Nations, and were undefeated for a year in 2005 and qualified to the 2006 FIFA World Cup, the first time the team had reached the global stage of the tournament.
Another new generation of the Black Stars players who won the 2009 FIFA World Youth Championship became the core of the team the following year and played in the final of the 2010 AFCON in Angola and played in the Quarter-Finals of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. The Black Stars have qualified for the AFCON tournament 22 times in total, finishing as runners-up five times, third once, and fourth four times. Thus, Ghana has the most final game appearances at the tournament with nine, essentially making the final in almost half of its appearances in the tournament. Ghana also holds the record of most consecutive semi-final appearances with six straight between 2008 and 2017.
Before I continue with matters arising,I want to ask a question,WHAT WORKED FOR THE BLACK STARS PREVIOUSLY? The answer is obvious, isn’t it?.
In my candid opinion, it is unwise for anybody to spend close to 10 million dollars thus GHc 54 million on a Black stars team that won only one game in four matches in the 2019 AFCON. This amount of money is around the same figure Ghana Government is struggling to retrieve from Alfred Woyome.
Out of this amount among others, the Black Star players got $110,000 each for winning only one game. Can you imagine? The Ghana premier league has only 16 clubs and you and I know what this amount of money can do in the development of the local game. One area we should also look at is the Academy system and setting up Academies demands serious commitment from handlers of football in Ghana,, we will by that have a stronger National Youth teams who will graduate into a formidable Black Stars.
In conclusion, I think it is about time we stopped monetizing the Black Stars and focus on developing the local game. Also, let’s all support by adding our voices to this development agenda for our local game for a better Ghana Black Stars in future and I know with time, we shall see the light at the end of the tunnel.
God bless Ghana Football.
By Gideon Selasi Avemegah