Take It Easy Appiah,Konadu

kwasi appiahTwo developments at the on-going CHAN tournament in South Africa cannot pass without comment.

The first is Black Stars coach, Kwesi Appiah’s praise of striker Yahaya Mohammed and the local Black Stars coach, Maxwell Konadu’s alleged anger at being accused of taking monies from players before fielding them.

Let us take Appiah’s comment on Yahaya first.

There is little a premier club or CHAN player would not do if he is promised a place in the mainstream Black Stars for 2014 Brazil.

Apart from bringing out the best in the players who may be engaged in the on-going Premier League, FA Cup or CHAN competitions, it makes them competitive which is good for the clubs or the national team.

That is why Kwesi Appiah has to tread cautiously in singling out Yahaya Mohammed for a mainstream Black Stars role.

The reason is simple; it is too early for that kind of back-patting.

As a matter of fact, of the two matches played by Yahaya, it was only in one, Ghana versus Libya, that he did perform well.

In the Ghana-Congo match, he was not impressive and since he did not play in the Ghana-Ethiopia match, it appears the Stars’ coach may be jumping the gun in heaping praises on Yahaya.

Simply put, in a competition like CHAN, a coach must not use one match to assess a player irrespective of his ability to spot raw talent.

Sometimes it takes a whole tournament to single out a star, but that is not even full-proof of how good a player would turn out to be.

Remember the Under-17 World Cup in 1991? Was Odartey Lamptey not touted to be a Pele in the making? Did it come to pass?

“What about Argentenian Janvier Pedro Saviola Fernandez?

In the 2001 World Under-20 tournament in Argentina, he was among the Argentine squad that defeated Ghana to win gold – and received rave write-ups.

After briefly making the headlines with Barcelona, he faded out like smoke.

With this knowledge, Appiah should be economical with praises for any one player now.

Apart from the possibility of being a disappointment like Odartey and Savicola, it sends the wrong signal if you know what I mean about our football politics.

Then on the accusation levelled at Konadu, one can understand his anger at those who are making the allegations.

But much as it is unfair, he should appreciate that he has been placed in a position where most close followers of Ghana football believe “good is not good when better is expected.”

The bottom-line is some do not understand why despite the victories, the Stars have made heavy weather of the three matches.

Some have been trying to find reasons for the mediocre performance, hence the unfounded allegation leveled at him.

He should by now have developed a thick skin and stay focused, for whether he likes it or not, this would not be the last of such vicious mudslinging.

While congratulating him for shepherding Ghana to the quarter-finals, he needs more grease to his elbows. By Christian Abbew

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