The Ghana Deaf Football Association (GDFA) has set a daring target of qualifying the national deaf football team, the Black Wonders, for the maiden deaf football World Cup.
South Korea will host the maiden competition in 2020 and according to the Head Coach of the team, Winfred Chartey Annan, the GDFA will leave no stone unturned in qualifying for the football fiesta reserved for players with hearing impairment.
He told the Times Sports that the team has achieved a lot in the West Africa sub-region and Africa as a whole and was ready to take on the world in the Korea tournament.
“We have done a lot against our peers on the continent and we feel this is the time for us to showcase out talent to the world. We have a talented squad in place boosted by the new selections we made after holding two major justifiers in Accra.”
But Coach Chartey Annan admitted the journey to Korea 2020 will not be straight-forward, adding that, ‘we may have to overcome a few battles here and there but we are extremely confident in the team’s ability.’
The journey to Korea 2020 will begin with a September 3-13 West Africa Deaf Football championship in Sierra Leone where the best within the West Africa sub-region gathers for a 10-day tournament.
From the Sierra Leone meet, three countries will secure qualification to join nine other African representatives from the three other regions of the continent for the Africa championship in Nigeria.
In the Africa championship, the two finalists and the third place play-off winner will occupy Africa at the World Cup and Coach Chartey Annan remains hopeful Ghana will win one of the slots.
He told the Times Sports the team has done enough to keep the players fit and active and ready for the September showdown which he sees as very critical.
“We have played several high profile games, the latest being the anniversary game to commemorate the birthday celebration of former president, Jerry John Rawlings. We have also played against some lower division sides.”
He, however, sees the lack of support from the corporate sector as the team’s biggest bane, believing that when their efforts are complement by corporate sector players and philanthropists, the Association will be able to camp players to prepare well.
He consequently appealed to companies to support the team which has been able to get some of these skilful deaf youth off the streets of the capital and other areas.
BY ANDREW NORTEY