Sports News of Wednesday, 11 October 2017
Black Stars coach Kwesi Appiah is delighted with the competition for places in the team and says he’s hoping for more headaches to select players.
The new look Black Stars continued their fine form with an emphatic 3-0 victory over 2018 FIFA World Cup-bound Saudi Arabia in Jeddah on Tuesday.
Kwesi Appiah made five changes to the team that drew 1-1 with Uganda in penultimate World Cup qualifier, handing debuts to goalkeeper Lawrence Ati-Zigi, Abass Mohammed, WAFU champion Isaac Twum, striker John Antwi, and defender Kassim Nuhu Adams.
And it was one of the debutants, Adams, who opened the scoring for Ghana before an own goal and in-form Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Partey sealed the win.
“It’s always good as a coach to have sleepless nights in the sense that once you have variety of players to pick from, it shows how strong the team will be and if you have a strong team even though you’ll have a headache with selection but at the end of it once there is victory your headache will come down,” says Appiah after the game.
“So, in a way I think is a national team because if it’s a club you are only limited to few players you’ve registered but this is a national team and it’s important we stretch our hands. At the end of it all, it is the nation that will benefit in the long term. When you start any project, automatically there will be lapses and some few issues but I believe that’s how you become strong and that’s how you develop and get a better team.”
The former international added he will keep tinkering with his squad selection until he gets a competitive squad for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
‘’We still need to be %100 sure about these players. Some players might play one or two games and do well but in the subsequent games they might not be the perfect type that you want and for that reason I always believe in giving players more opportunities to play so that we can all be %100 sure they’re the right players to replace whoever is out of the team,”
“The process will keep going on but I’ve given myself time. By next year or in the middle of next year I’ll have to stop inviting so many new players into the team because you see, If you’re building a team you don’t wait for 2019 before you start inviting new players or 2018, and that’s the reason all along this year I made my mind to try and invite so many players so that we can all be %100 sure we have some alternatives.”
“Now I’m looking by the middle of next year to stop the invitation of mass players and limit it to those that we are %100 sure they can form nucleus of the team in 2019, and then build the team around them and make sure tactically they will understand our vision and our tactical play before 2019. I don’t need to wait to the last minute,” he deduced.