A former captain of both Kumasi Asante Kotoko and the National Soccer team, the Black Stars, Coach Kwasi Appiah has reportedly disagreed on the salary that he is supposed to receive at the end of the month, as an Assistant Coach of the Black Stars. Whilst the former affable captain is demanding $6000, the Ghana Football Association (GFA) is prepared to offer $3000.
As the two parties were reportedly engaged in a meeting to come to a compromise, a Minister of State at the Ministry of Education, Science and Sports spoke on air and virtually ordered Kwasi Appiah to accept the $3000 offer or look elsewhere for employment.
The Chronicle finds the stand of both the GFA and that of the Sports Ministry to be very unfortunate. They seemed to have so soon forgotten the great service Kwasi Appiah rendered to this country during his playing days.
Football is now a big time business with people investing billions of dollars into it. A few years back, football was played in Ghana just for the mere fun and love for the game, but today it is a lucrative business. Big time corporate bodies are prepared to invest in and sponsor soccer teams because of the big returns that they would get. It is because of this changing trend in the world soccer terrain that the GFA is today prepared to hire a foreign coach, Milovan Rajevac (Milo), and pay him a mouth-watering salary of $45,000 a month.
Rather unfortunately, because of the disrespect that the GFA has for the local coaches, they are not even prepared to pay one-third of Milo's huge monthly salary to a local coach. The current national coach of Zambia, Herve Renard, was earning $10,000 a month when the FA contracted him to assist Claude Le Roy, but since Kwesi Appiah has black skin, he is being asked to either take the $3000, or go look elsewhere.
The Chronicle thinks somebody at the FA thinks he or she is not earning as much as Kwasi Appiah is demanding, so why should he approve $6000 for a black assistant coach. Until the FA and the Ministry of Education, Science and Sports do away with this primitive thinking, Ghana soccer would remain stagnant. How much did Ghana give to Kwasi Appiah at the time that he devoted his energy and youth to win laurels for this country, to merit the injustice being meted out to him?
Most of the current crop of players playing for Black Stars rose through the ranks of the junior national teams like the Starlets, Satellites and Meteors, which were supported with the taxpayer's money, for them to rise to stardom. Yet, these players who currently form the bulk of the senior national team earn fat bonuses when they feature for the Black Stars. However, those who sacrificed for the country in the 1980s and 1990s, at a time the monetary reward in football was soo low, are today being denied the peanut they deserve.
Kwasi Appiah and all the local coaches deserve a better treatment from the FA, and we call on the government to intervene and make sure that the Black Stars' Assistant Coach gets a salary that is commensurate with his position.
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