Sports News of Tuesday, 25 June 2019
Ghana can only win the 2019 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) if the Black Stars play as a family, seasoned coach, J.E.A Sarpong has said.
What has been Ghana’s bane since the country won the cup in 1982, he stated, has been selfishness on the part of players in the team.
His comment comes hours to the crucial game between Black Stars of Ghana and the Squirrels of Benin at the Ismailia Stadium.
Benin qualified for this year’s AFCON by finishing second in a group with Algeria, Gambia and Togo. This is their first appearance since 2010. The Squirrels are yet to make it past the group stage.
Black Stars are hoping to break the jinx by winning the 2019 AFCON to rock shoulders with host nation Egypt and Cameroon who have won the cup seven and five times respectively.
Coach Sarpong on Adom FM’s morning show, Dwaso Nsem programme, Tuesday stressed that Ghana’s dream will only come true if the Black Stars play as a unit.
He stated that, given the pressure on the team, there should be no room for egocentric play just to make a name.
“In such tournaments, icons display a lot of skills but we don’t need that now. The passer of the ball is the scorer of the goal so the players must not be selfish. The heartbeat of the nation is the Black Stars,” coach Sarpong charged.
He also charged the coach, Kwesi Appiah to stamp his authority and ensure players remain disciplined throughout the tournament.
Coach Sarpong was happy there is seeming peace at the Black Stars camp “and I believe it is a good omen for Ghana.
“If we play as a team, respect the coach and play according to his tactics, Ghana can win the cup,” he added.
Also, sports presenter, Kwaku Bediako, also known as Maestro, was hopeful the peace in camp would translate into victory.
He said the players have no excuse and ought to win the game against Benin because they have been motivated both physically and spiritually.
Maestro called for all hands on deck to uplift the spirit of disoriented Ghanaians.
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