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26.11.2002 Sports News

OPINION: Fire The Sports Minister

By Owarean
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In his usual egoistic manner sports minister Osei Kuffuor warned that supertstar Osei Kuffuor should forget about playing in the black stars uniform unless kuffour renders a personal apology to him for kuffuor's alleged indiscretion in mali. now if he thinks the world's best #4 needs the sports minister more than ghana needs kuffour, osei kwaku must be living on a fantasy island. This is just one example of the sports minister's flawed style of leadership which is always "my way or else?" Osei kwaku has been an obstacle to the development of soccer in ghana. the black stars are recording some their worst performances on his watch. the team's performance in the last nations cup was disgraceful, to say the least. and now his priority is getting his body afranie the coaching job, instead of allowing the gfa boss to recruit a substantive coach to rebuild the team. Don't blame our ills --incompetent management at the gfa and sports ministry levels-- on foreign coaches. i don't know the criteria that was used to select people like osei kwaku and e.t. mensah for the sports ministry post, but they were the wrong men selected at worst possible time for ghana. Ghana soccer and sports in general is in a deep hole, so we need a highly competent minister whose is innovative, open to new ideas and willing to delegate authority. the choice of a coach should be left to the gfa boss. are countries like senegal any richer than ghana? if they can afford a top-notch coach who can achieve amazing results, ghana should be able to do the same. qualifying for the world cup earns a team at least $2 million, which is more than enough to defray the cost of hiring a top foreign coach. the fact remains that our local coaches are way behind the top european or south american coaches. My recommendation is to hire foreign coach assisted by a young and enterprising local coach, who will learn from the head coach. besides the local coach will help bridge the cultural gap between the players and the foreign coach. You look at the performance of countries like senegal, cameroun and nigeria (past team) and tell me foreign coaches are irrelevant. senegal is currently being coached by a former coach of the french national team; that's the kind of caliber coach the black stars need. Despite the success of our boys in argentina, it was apparent that the team's weakest link was coaching. our boys were head and shoulders above their opponents in individual talent but lost 0-3 to argentina b'cos of poor strategy.

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