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Ghana gained Afcon 4 instances, however the final time was 40 years in the past. What went improper with its soccer workforce?

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The Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) is a very powerful soccer event in Africa. It has been contested by the male nationwide groups of nations on the continent since 1957. Egypt is the most profitable nation within the event’s historical past, with seven wins, the newest in 2010. Beforehand, Ghana was the dominant pressure with 4 wins. Regardless of producing world class gamers, the nation has not gained the event in 4 a long time.

Because the 2023 version performs out in Côte d’Ivoire, The Dialog Africa’s Godfred Akoto Boafo speaks to sports activities scientist Ernest Yeboah Acheampong on what has gone improper for Ghana.

Ghana produces gamers who characteristic in prime leagues. What’s its document at Afcon?

Ghana has a powerful attachment to soccer. Its first president, Kwame Nkrumah, used the game as a part of his technique to advertise nationwide unity. He pushed the game as a most popular choice for Ghanaian youths and even arrange a workforce that competed within the native league. This laid the platform for a rustic that has persistently produced footballers of continental renown who’ve contributed to the success of their membership groups. They embrace Abedi Pele (UEFA Champions League winner with Olympic Marseille), Samuel Kuffour (Bayern Munich), Sulley Muntari (Inter Milan), Michael Essien (Chelsea FC) and Asamoah Gyan.

The conveyor belt of high quality gamers produced by Ghana led to the nation dominating the Afcon event. It gained titles in 1963, 1965, 1978 and 1982. However regardless of having a number of top quality gamers in its nationwide workforce, Ghana’s finest efficiency in current tournaments has been a finals look in 2015.

What’s the downside?

The problems embrace poor preparation, poor dedication ranges of gamers, unhealthy workforce politics and disputes over remuneration. There has additionally been a decline within the high quality of the native league as Ghanaian golf equipment have struggled to draw followers to their video games and to compete amongst their continental friends. Then there may be interference by the political elite as the federal government typically seeks to make use of the game to attain and improve its public standing.

Ghana’s youth soccer system used to prioritise the progress of expertise by way of completely different age classes. This not exists. Competitor nations like Senegal, Morocco and Algeria have constructed their current success on sound observe like this. There may be additionally issue in getting certified and skilled coaches or trainers who perceive development and growth in expertise identification and development. The shortcoming of the nation’s soccer federation to take care of an environment friendly database of proficient gamers means among the most proficient gamers don’t get seen.

Lastly, there may be the lengthy held notion that some gamers are chosen primarily based on their potential to remit cash or their private relationships to influential members of the soccer affiliation and generally the technical workforce.

What should change?

Ghana can enhance its possibilities of successful Afcon when key stakeholders are in a position to take away obstacles, wastefulness and undesirable practices that hamper the progress of the nationwide workforce. There must be an applicable grassroots construction for all of the nationwide groups which ensures the sleek progress of expertise. This helps the event of soccer expertise by way of the ranks as advisable by Fifa’s pyramid (grassroots for the inspiration, youth earlier than elite stage).

The authorities should not appoint leaders who shouldn’t have the requisite data in soccer and administration practices. Funding in soccer infrastructure and capability constructing of coaches is essential for growth and to enhance the possibilities of successful. Senegal, Morocco and Algeria have all used this path. This funding ought to lower throughout the home leagues and grassroots construction and techniques.

The choice of gamers should comply with particular standards that prioritise expertise who characteristic repeatedly at their golf equipment. These approaches, impressed by the practices in nations the place sport scientists and managers play pivotal roles, can enhance Ghana’s possibilities of ending its 40 12 months drought. Additionally, it’s time to give technocrats the chance to contribute meaningfully to the actions of the soccer affiliation in varied capacities primarily based on their scientific data and expertise.

There’s a have to develop a strong database of Ghanaian gamers each overseas and domestically to make sure efficient supervision and monitoring of their efficiency of their leagues. Importantly, coaches and trainers must be extra involved about trendy strategies of coaching and administration of skills because the sport has develop into extra scientific.


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