Asamoah Gyan’s announcement of his retirement from national duty on Monday has stoked intense controversy among the football populace and the lay people.
The announcement, coming in with few weeks to this year’s African Cup of Nations championship in Egypt, has left the game’s followers divided.
While some have considered it as a good riddance due to the attacker’s recurrent injury lately, others believe his absence will have a telling effect on the team taking into account his vast experience, coupled with his current form; scoring three times in two games.
A close source to the Keyserispor forward said Gyan’s decision to lay down his tools was purely on the technical team’s decision to strip the captain’s armband from him (Gyan) for ‘spiritual’ reasons accounted for his decision to quit the Black Stars role.
And inferring to that effect in his retirement statement, he mentioned that he will withdraw his services from the team as long as a colleague is named as the substantial Black Stars captain while he (Gyan) is still in the squad.
It has also emerged that negative reportage in the media in recent weeks, questioning his ability to lead the team for Egypt championship due to his recent chronic injury situation informed his decision to quit the national team.
The source, summarising a conversation involving Coach Kwasi Appiah and Gyan ahead of the retirement said, “Asamoah Gyan was told that if the captain armband is given to Andre Ayew, Ghana will win the AFCON so he (Gyan) was asked to think about it and relinquish the captain to Andre, while he assumes the general captain role.”
He added that the former Sunderland marksman has decided to concentrate on his club career, attributing his recurrent injuries to an “unseen forces” working against him due to the fact that he is the captain of the Stars.
Nicknamed Baby Jet, the 33-year-old is the country’s most capped player with 106 appearances, hitting the back of the net 51 times; the country’s all time top scorer and Africa’s joint top scorer at the World Cup.
The musician cum striker has featured in two African Cup of Nations Cups and three FIFA World Cups for the Black Stars after joining the senior national team since 2003.
Part of his statement read, “I also wish to retire from the national team permanently not pretending my presence would not fuel the purported undermining the country as seen under my captaincy.”
Gyan added, “I would continue to serve the country Ghana in other endeavours as a businessman through various investments.”
Meanwhile, indications are that Turkey-based midfielder Dede Ayew is set to be named as the substantive captain of the Stars, with Thomas Partey as his deputy.
By Kofi Owusu AduonumRead Full Story