27.06.2003 Sports News

Black Stars/ Buckhard performance

Black Stars/ Buckhard performance
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The reaction of Ghanaians in the last few days after the Black Stars unimpressive performance against the Cranes of Uganda in their crucial Cup of Nations tie at the Kumasi Sports Stadium gives enough cause to worry.

Questions on what might have gone wrong, after having assembled almost all the top players the country can boast of, are still being asked and many are those who could not come to terms with what might have contributed to the low performance by the national team.

No matter what one feels, our coach and the so-called idols failed us with their attitude before and during the game. It seemed to me that the authorities are not able to identify players whose services were needed for the match and those we do not need.

If with only four days to such important game foreign-based professionals were still trooping to camp, then what was Ghanaians expecting? Indeed we attached little if not no relevance to when players should report to camp.

While some good players had complied with their invitation and reported to camp from the on- set, they were rather made to warm the bench only for the late comers to don the national jersey for whatever reasons known only to our handlers.

For God's sake, some players who we did not need at all were featured though they came late. The argument that we need all players aboard is the best but not to all extent.

It was glaring that some of the players that were supposed to don the nation colours refused to die for the loyal supporters who thronged the stadium to cheer the team to victory; but these were the choice of the authorities.

It is baffling to hear coach Buckhard Ziese claiming that our local boys could not live up to expectation when offered the opportunity. That assertion is ridiculous in the sense that it's an insult to our premier league.

If we have as many as sixteen league clubs in the country and the German is insisting that he cannot at least get one good player from each club for a good team and proceed to invite foreign players, would one not be right in concluding that the man is not ready to work?

What is the duty of a coach? In simple terms to groom and build a team. It's been three months down the lane and our coach has not been able to raise a single team. Should Ghanaians not have every reason to worry?

No one is aware of how long coach Ziese's reliance on the professionals, who are less committed to play for the national team, would end. Apart from his inability to read the game, Ziese's one other area of weakness is player selection.

What did Mr. Zeise thought he was doing when he played three typical defenders like Abuberkari Yakubu, Kofi Amponsah, and Osei-Kuffore in defence without any sweeper?

Having noticed that both Charles Amoah and Augustine Ahinful were passengers on the afternoon, it became evident that the Stars needed players of the calibre of William Tiero and Lawrence Aidoo who are capable to forcing any defence to commit mistakes instead of the duo who played a relaxed game without any sense of urgency.

For the past three months the coach had insisted that the country had no good goalkeepers but has done nothing to help those available to improve their performance. Is it not an insult to Ghanaians that Eddy Ansah who was prone to mistakes in his hay days is, in the opinion of coach better than Louis Quanoo, George Owu, Isaac Amoako and Sammy Adjei.

Had the coach not realised that in his build up against the Cranes, his game against Kenya and Kotoko it was only when he introduce some local boys - - Bortey, Tiero and Michael Osei among others that the game tilted in the Stars favour.

It is agreeable that the man is talking more that he is working. Where on earth can a coach order that players be given their bonuses according to how long they lasted in a game?

But need the coach be blamed alone? Whoever might have convinced Samuel Osei-Kuffour to join the team at the eleventh hour might have been disgraced by the player's actions toward Skipper Stephen Appiah when he was asked to get back to his position when he had abandoned his role and choose to strike.

He disregarded the skipper and my issue is that if we really thought that the defender's inclusion would have been valuable to the team, then he must have been "begged" as we hear was done by some powers that be earlier enough than the Wednesday he joined the camp since he had been in town even before the team was invited for camping.

What prevented the coach from inviting specific number of players rather than the open door for every foreign-based player on arriving in the country?

If the coach is not prepared to work and raise a team, as he has portrayed so far and hence his reliance on the professionals, then would it not be more beneficial for him to stay in his Germany base and monitor our players and come down when it becomes relevant rather than staying in the country while he does nothing about local team building?

So long us we would continue to accept anything, then we must not expect good results.

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