The Africa Cup of International locations (Afcon) is an important soccer event in Africa. It’s been contested by means of the male nationwide groups of nations at the continent since 1957. Egypt is the most successful nation within the event’s historical past, with seven wins, the newest in 2010. In the past, Ghana was once the dominant power with 4 wins. Regardless of generating international magnificence avid gamers, the rustic has no longer gained the event in 4 many years.
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 long gone incorrect for Ghana.
Ghana produces avid gamers who characteristic in best leagues. What’s its document at Afcon?
Ghana has a robust attachment to soccer. Its first president, Kwame Nkrumah, used the game as a part of his technique to advertise nationwide harmony. He driven the game as a most well-liked possibility for Ghanaian youths or even set up a team 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 luck in their membership groups. They come with 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 avid gamers produced by means of Ghana resulted in the rustic dominating the Afcon event. It won titles in 1963, 1965, 1978 and 1982. However in spite of having a number of prime quality avid gamers in its nationwide crew, Ghana’s absolute best efficiency in contemporary tournaments has been a finals appearance in 2015.
What’s the downside?
The problems come with deficient preparation, deficient dedication ranges of avid gamers, bad crew 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 enthusiasts to their video games and to compete amongst their continental friends. Then there’s interference by means of the political elite as the federal government frequently seeks to make use of the game to succeed in and make stronger its public status.
Ghana’s early life soccer machine used to prioritise the development of skill thru other age classes. This now not exists. Competitor international locations like Senegal, Morocco and Algeria have built their recent success on sound observe like this. There could also be issue in getting certified and skilled coaches or running shoes who perceive expansion and construction in skill id and development. The lack of the rustic’s soccer federation to handle an effective database of gifted avid gamers way one of the most maximum gifted avid gamers don’t get spotted.
In spite of everything, there’s the lengthy held belief that some avid gamers are decided on in accordance with their talent to remit cash or their non-public relationships to influential contributors of the soccer affiliation and on occasion the technical crew.
What should alternate?
Ghana can support its possibilities of successful Afcon when key stakeholders are ready to take away hindrances, wastefulness and unwanted practices that abate the development of the nationwide crew. There will have to be an acceptable grassroots construction for the entire nationwide groups which promises the sleek development of skill. This helps the advance of soccer skill in the course of the ranks as advisable by means of Fifa’s pyramid (grassroots for the basis, early life ahead of elite stage).
The government should no longer appoint leaders who don’t have the considered necessary wisdom in soccer and control practices. Funding in soccer infrastructure and capability construction of coaches is the most important for construction and to support the possibilities of successful. Senegal, Morocco and Algeria have all used this trail. This funding will have to reduce around the home leagues and grassroots construction and programs.
The collection of avid gamers should apply particular standards that prioritise skill who characteristic often at their golf equipment. Those approaches, impressed by means of the practices in international locations the place game scientists and bosses play pivotal roles, can support Ghana’s possibilities of finishing its 40 12 months drought. Additionally, it’s time to give technocrats the chance to give a contribution meaningfully to the actions of the soccer affiliation in quite a lot of capacities in accordance with their medical wisdom and revel in.
There’s a want to expand a strong database of Ghanaian avid gamers each in another country and locally to make sure efficient supervision and tracking in their efficiency of their leagues. Importantly, coaches and running shoes will have to be extra excited by fashionable strategies of coaching and control of abilities because the game has develop into extra medical.