Soccer News of Sunday, 26 July 2015
It is all square in Takoradi at the Gyandu Park where the 2015 Airtel Rising kicked off on Saturday, July 25.
The best players from the Western and Central Region under 15 teams did distinguish themselves with their quality of football but neither team has done enough to be a clear winner going into the final day.
The two male teams each from the Western and Central Regions involved in a round robin competition are both in with the chance of winning the diadem and more importantly the coveted ticket to the Airtel Rising Stars national finals to be held in Sunyani.
“This Airtel Rising Stars competition is so important to the Ghana football Association that we cannot even belabour the point anymore,” said Eddie Doku, the National Juvenile Committee (NJC) chairman and member of the Executive Committee of the Ghana Football Association.
“Look at the level of talent that is on display here at the Gyandu Park. Look at how fiercely the boys are competing. After the first day of matches they are evenly placed. Whoever wins the tournament will really deserve it,” Mr. Doku added.
The Technical Director of the Ghana Football Association, Francis Oti Akenteng has been mandated by the soccer controlling body to be the technical overseer of this year’s Airtel Rising Stars. The crux of his duties is to watch at least five hundred players four times within six weeks and identify the special ones from the ordinary players.
Oti Akenteng is also holding meetings with all coaches on Airtel Rising Stars on the sidelines of the competition to help them with technical direction.
“Airtel Rising Stars is a very critical job. Without it, we cannot feed our national teams. The President of the Ghana Football Association, Kwesi Nyantakyi regards Airtel Rising Stars as the most important competition in Ghana. So he has given me specific instructions to use this competition to build the nucleus of the national Under 17 team,” Coach Oti Akenteng noted.
“And that is why I am here today. The level is good at their age. Now let’s see who wins the competition tomorrow 26 of July. But Western and Central Region have shown us that there is a future for Ghana football. People should come and support these boys. They are our future,” concluded Francis Oti Akenteng.
After Western Region, the Airtel Rising Stars train moves to Konongo where the Eastern and Ashanti Regions will do battle for a ticket to the national finals in Sunyani on the 29th and 30th of August. Other touch points for Airtel Rising Stars this year are Wa (Upper West), Tamale (Northern) and Denu (Volta).
The Properties and Assets manager of Airtel Rising Stars, Kwame Gyan holds high hopes for both Western and Central Regions.
“Whoever wins is a worthy winner. That is the privilege of transparency. Airtel Rising Stars is where football stars are born and I have no doubt that the big breaks are coming for the boys. At Airtel we are concerned about giving back to the society. We are touching lives by empowering their talent. And soon, some will be playing for the Black Stars,” Kwame Gyan said emphatically.