Black Stars still need Muntari and Essien – Stephen Appiah

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Michael-Essien-and-Stephen-Appiah-on-their-way-to-the-airportFormer captain of the Black Stars, Stephen Appiah says Ghana still needs the services and experience of both Michael Essien and Sulley Muntari ahead of the 2015 African Cup of Nations.

Muntari is currently serving an indefinite suspension from the national team following his fisticuffs with a Management Committee member during the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. Essien, on the other hand, has not been handed a call up after the 2014 World Cup where he played a peripheral role for Ghana.

The duo, both of who play for Italian giants AC Milan, have been in fine form this season but are not expected to make Ghana’s squad for the 2015 Nations Cup in Equatorial Guinea. But speaking on the JOY Sports Link last Saturday, Appiah said he thinks Essien and Muntari are still needed in the Black Stars if Ghana is to win the Nations Cup.

“They are good players and I think they still have a lot of football in them. They are my friends but I don’t want them to return only because they are my friends, but they are AC Milan players and they are playing very well so personally I think we need them back in the Black Stars.”

Meanwhile, Stephen Appiah says he has received encouragement from very respectable people in society who are eager to see him become the coach of the Black Stars someday.

The former Juventus star said coaching is high on his agenda even though he is yet to officially retire as a footballer.

He said he would like to work his way up the coaching ladder by taking up the Black Starlets job upon completion of his badges.

“I have never rushed in life; why should I go straight to coach Black Stars when I get my coaching badges? You have to start somewhere because it is going to be a new thing. It is not like football where I can say I am good so I can do whatever I like with the football. Coaching is a different area so if I get my badges I don’t think I will go to the Black Stars. I will be very humble to start from the Starlets and gradually I will get the experience and confidence to handle the Black Stars.”

Stephen Appiah has become an admirable figure in Ghanaian football history after he guided the Black Stars to two successive FIFA World Cup tournaments (2006 and 2010) in Germany and South Africa respectively.

He is seen as future Black Stars coach and was recently part of the Black Stars’ backroom staff for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

He has also confirmed that he has been approached by the GFA to play a role ahead of the 2015 African Cup of Nation to be staged in Equatorial Guinea from January 17 to February 8.

Ghana have been housed in Group C alongside Algeria, Senegal and South Africa.

By Daniel Oduro

ABOUT: Nana Kwesi Coomson

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A Freelance Journalist, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist. Editor-in-Chief of www.233times.com. A contributory writer for Ghanaian Chronicle Newspaper. An alumnus of Adisadel College where he read General Arts. He holds first degree in Bachelor of Arts from the University of Ghana; Political Science (major) and History (minor). He has also pursued MSc Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Energy with Public Relations (PR) at the Robert Gordon University in the United Kingdom. He is a 2018 Mandela Washington Fellow (YALI) who studied at Clark Atlanta University on the Business and Entrepreneurship track. His mentors are Rupert Murdoch, Warren Buffet, Sam Jonah, Kwaku Sakyi Addo and Piers Morgan

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