Letter to Charley EP02: The Black Stars’ Malady and Nyantakyi’s Diagnosis


Mr. Kwesi Nyantakyi – GFA Boss

Charley, have you been listening to the GFA Boss, Mr. Kwesi Nyantakyi, lately? He has been making some fantastic statements. Particularly, the GFA boss has made an interesting diagnosis of the Black Stars problem.

In case it has eluded you, Charley, permit me to summarize this problem. Ghana has not won anything at the Black Stars level since 1982. Year-after-year, the Blacks Stars have flattered everyone’s interest and raised hopes only to leave Ghanaian high and dry when it matters most.

Charley, the root causes of this underachievement is anyone’s guess. Tons of ‘expert’ diagnoses have been poured into outer space. None of these explanations have tickled my fancy more than Mr. Nyantaki’s:

“Its belief, we have a good management, a good technical team and good players so what is left? We need to toughen them (players) psychologically… “

He did not end it there Charley, he went on to propose how the GFA believes Ghana will win [the next] trophy:

“…and that is why we are bringing in the sports psychologist. They (players) must have the belief they can win the Nations Cup and this must show on the field of play.”

Charley, I would hate to be the guy to give the GFA Boss and his deputies the wake-up kick. Only a dreamer will believe we have a technical team which is superior to all the coaching minds in Africa. Does Mr. Nyantakyi that Akwasi Appiah’s coaching can improve?

It is only in wishful dreams can we convince ourselves that our aging, injury prone, inactive, bench-warming and often inexperienced players are good enough to challenge for titles with just the adequate dose of belief.

Is he suggesting that the players did not believe in themselves all this while? Have we been wasting our energies supporting a team which lacks adequate belief?

Why will the GFA Boss overlook some of the realities on the ground, Charley? Which realities include a player selection that seems ignores merit; costly coaching choices and often pitiful preparations towards tournaments among others.

Perhaps in his mind, these challenges can be whitewashed with an adequate dose of ‘belief’ from a psychologist.

I am pretty sure Mr. Nyantakyi’s comments were in good faith. He and his deputies are making good effort to ensure Ghana succeeds; there is no doubt about it. However this diagnosis is inadequate and the proposed solution is not likely to solve the Black Stars problem, Charley.


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