Mikel Obi to Nigeria’s rescue, Team Ghana still stranded

Amputee Football World Cup: Mikel Obi to Nigeria’s rescue, Team Ghana still stranded

Super Eagles captain John Obi Mikel is set to help Nigeria’s amputee team play at the upcoming World Cup by offering to “donate money and buy kits” to help the Special Eagles play at the tournament, having missed the previous three editions due to financial constraints.

But the Black Challenge, Ghana’s Amputee Football National Team, who find themselves in similar situation, are still waiting on the Sports Ministry to fund their trip, three days to the start of the competition.

“We’ve spoken to a representative of John Mikel Obi who has offered to help the team,” Fred Edoreh, co-ordinator of fund-raising, told BBC Sport.

“His support will come as a big boost, but right now the dilemma is to find the flights to get the squad to Mexico.

“Time is running out on us and with ticket costs increasing by the day towards our opening game against our budget, we are taking the hard decisions of sending the first team as first batch.

“The first batch should have left today but there were not enough seats on the last lap of the journey, from Mexico City to Guadalajara. Our travel agents are working hard to secure space for them by tomorrow.”

Ghana’s participation in the games remain in jeopardy, with seven members of the team yet to secure visas for Mexico with the team set to play their opening match against Italy on Sunday.

“We are still waiting on the Sports Ministry to give us letters to take on the Mexican Embassy for visas for seven members of our team,” Theodore Mawuli, Communications Director of the Interim Management Committee of the Ghana Amputee Football Association told Citi Sports.

The IMC has also yet to secure flight tickets to Mexico, with the competition set to kick off on Saturday.

Players from the Ghana Amputee football team called off a planned demonstration two weeks after the ministry assured them they would come to their aid.

Team Ghana set up a crowd-funding campaign on fundraising platform GoFundMe in September with a goal of $150,000 but as at the time of filing this report, not a single dollar had been donated.

Ghana could face up to a 12 year ban and a fine if they fail to show up at the competition again after missing the previous edition for same reasons.

Russia won the competition four years ago after beating Angola 3-1 in the final.

Fentuo Tahiru/citinewsroom.com/Ghana

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