Don’t be distracted by Awako’s departure…Alhaji Dodoo Ankrah tells Oly players

Accra Great Olympics legend, Alhaji Adam Nii Dodoo Ankrah, has asked the current players of the team to stay focused and not be distracted by the departure of their Captain, Gladson Awako to city rivals, Hearts of Oak.

Having played and make the headlines with him, Alhaji Ankrah said it could have a negative effect on the team if not managed well and that it was important that the technical team and others involved worked on the psyche of the players.

Speaking with the Times Sports on Tuesday, the 86-year old veteran who joined Olympics as a third choice goalkeeper in 1956 but rose to become the number one choice, said Awako’s departure was a common occurrence in the game of football.

However, when it involves a cult hero, it has the tendency to affect the players who look up to him for inspiration, he said.

“Movement of players from one club to the other happens a lot in football. It generates a lot of controversy when major rivals are involved and can sometimes affect the players’ mentality.”

“Such movement can adversely affect his former players but positively impact on the new team mates because they know it will enhance competition.”

He said with Olympics, both players and fans may be wondering who will be brought in or which player will have the big heart to fill the vacuum created.

According to Alhaji Dodoo Ankrah, it was important for the technical team to look at the strength of Awako’s replacement and devise his strategies around him just as it happened with the departed player.

He commended the team’s performance in the last season and added that with more effort, the team will truly compete for the trophy which has eluded the Wonder Club for many years.

He called for unity within the rank and file of the club in order to achieve their aim, warning that “if you (Olympics) don’t end the usual infighting and acrimony that has been associated with the club for many years, it could cost you.”

BY ANDREW NORTEY & NANA BENTSI ODURO

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