Sports News of Saturday, 12 June 2021
Ghana Football Association (GFA) President Kurt Okraku was obviously disappointed the Black Meteors were humiliated in Japan but believes it was a good test for the team which is in the building process.
The Ghana U-23 team were beaten 10-0 in two friendly games by the Japanese Olympic football team. The first match ended 6-0 and three days later, Japan recorded a 4-0 win.
The GFA has come in for a lot of criticism for the outcome of the games, but Okraku believes the team will recover and achieve its long-term vision, which is winning next year’s African Games on home soil.
“Our intention is to build all our national teams at all times independent of competitions. In the time past, you only see an assembling of our national teams when fixtures are being drawn for competitions. So we had this invitation from Japan and our decision was to embark on the trip or not, knowing very well we don’t have a national team in place, ie the U23.
“But we decided that it will also be part of the process of developing a team so the head coach and his team will want to take this opportunity to expose the players that they have to see which of them will be helpful to the cause. Don’t forget Ghana host the African Games, 18 months down the line and we have to win that competition so we decided to embark on it regardless of the results that may come out.
“We played two games, it didn’t go very well by way of results but it has given all of us, the technical team included, an idea as to which of those persons in the squad we can take forward in our attempt to develop a national team that would be competitive enough for us. The end vision is to be competitive during the African Games and to ensure the trophy stays in Ghana,” Okraku said in an interview with TV3.
The Black Meteors will play South Korea twice before returning to Ghana.