GFA boss insists on merit for selection into B. Stars

FBL-WC-2014-GHA-PRESSPRESIDENT of the Ghana Football Association, Kwesi Nyantakyi has poured cold water on calls for a selection quota of local players in the Black Stars, insisting ‘ it does not make ‘sense’.

In what could be described as a direct response to claims by the chairman of the Premier League Board, Nyantakyi said attempts to ‘force’ local players on the national team coach is unfair and amount to populism.

Welbeck Abra-Appiah, the chairman of the PLB, criticized current Black Stars coach Avram Grant for overlooking local players in his squad ahead of this month’s international friendlies against Senegal and Mali.

Abra-Appiah expressed unhappiness with the practice which he claims could cripple the domestic league.

But Nyantakyi disagrees and says invitation into the national should remain on merit and not on sentiments.

“Are you going to bench Asamoah Gyan, Agyemang Badu or Andre Ayew just because Gilbert Fiamenyo or Nathaniel is our best player in the domestic league? I don’t think it will make sense,” Nyantakyi noted.

“There is some populism in that view but I don’t think it’s (quota) is the best way to select players for the team.

“Every national team selects its best players regardless of where they ply their trades. It is never intentional to downplay or disregard locally based players.

“We always encourage locally based players to do that but your best player who plies his trade in the local league may be competing with your best player who plies his trade abroad.”

Nyantakyi’s comment will spark another wave of controversy in the ensuing debate over the seeming neglect of local players in the Black Stars.

“The National team of Ghana is not for only local players it is for every Ghanaian player playing very well in Ghana and outside, and that is the opinion of the PLB boss and not the entire PLB, I disagree with him” Nyantakyi added.

“The best player or striker in the league will have to compete with Asamoah Gyan and the best defender will compete with John Boye or Jonathan Mensah.

“I disagree that Grant is destroying the league, we have to give the coach the benefit of the doubt”

Some believe there should be a policy to reserve a quota for locals in the domestic league to encourage them to stay in the country.

By Times sports Reporter

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