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Goalkeeping worries for Ghana ahead of crucial Egypt tie

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Posted on September 20, 2013

Ghanaian blogger Kweku Zurek examines the Black Stars’ goalkeeping headache ahead of next month’s crucial World Cup play-off with .

Somehow Ghana managed to draw the one team all Ghanaians didn’t want to meet; the Pharaohs of Egypt.

The Black Stars recently welcomed some exiled and temporarily retired players back into the squad for their victory against the Chippolopolo of Zambia but the presence of such players did little to paper over the cracks of the defensive aspects in coach Kwesi Appiah’s team.

Fatau Dauda Ghana

Fatau Dauda

Ghana’s number-one goalie Fatau Bauda recently made a transfer to South Africa, where he joined Orlando Pirates only to find himself perpetually benched because South Africas second-choice goalie; Senzo Meyiwa is currently in the form of his life at Pirates. Dauda is actually yet to make his debut at the Buccaneers and against Zambia he showed jitters every time he came out of his goal to claim or parry a cross. His performance on the day was that of a keeper who is very rusty and lacking match practice.

 Ghana goalkeeper Adam Kwarasey

Adam Kwarasey

The former first-choice goalie, Adam Kwarasey who is the captain at Norwegian-side Stromgodset IF, lost his place in the build-up to the last AFCON to Dauda. The Norwegian-born goalie is currently injured (groin strain) and a date for his return has not yet been set. Kwarasey conceded two goals in the last match he started for Ghana against Turkey (he was withdrawn at half-time and Razak Brimah who plays club football for CD Guadalajara  made his debut).

 BETIS 09/10

Razak Brimah

The third-choice goalie, Razak Brimah was having a brilliant game in goal during the recent friendly against Japan till the Blue Samurai’s turned on the style and he was left picking three-balls from his twine in the second half. He released Asamoah Gyan with a long throw from his own half for the striker to grab the equalizer against the Turks on his debut but he also made some schoolboy errors against Japan (a game where Ghana fielded a “B side”).

The lack of quality goal-keeping options has led to calls for the return of the veteran Richard “OLELE” Kingson, the former Wigan Athletic and Blackpool goalie recently secured a one-year deal with Cypriot club Doxa Katokopia. After 18 months out of football with problems both on and off the pitch, It could be argued that Richard Kingson lost his place in the squad due to his club-lessness as much as his age of 35years (unlike in Egypt, in Ghana a player is on borrowed time as soon as he hits 30). Kingson is currently playing active football and could be set for a swansong in Brazil.

Several goalies are on the fringes of the squad chiefly amongst them the World U-20 winning goalie Daniel Adjei who has very happy memories from Egypt where he became a world-champion with the Black Satellites. He was a player who received many call-ups without making many starts but the call-ups dried up when he made a move to PSL-side Free State Stars. He received a baptism of fire on his PSL debut and hasn’t yet locked down a starting slot.

Former Black Stars and Accra Hearts of Oak goalie, Sammy Adjei has indicated a willingness to play for the Stars even though he is clubless at the moment. Adjei grew frustrated with the Black Stars after being frozen-out on the bench due to the wonderful form of Richard Kingson.

There is also some un-tested goal-keeping talent in the Glo-Premier League; Foli Adade (Medeama SC) and Isaac Amoako (Kumasi Asante Kotoko) but both have no chance of being given a starting berth against Egypt due to their inexperience on the international stage.

The Black Stars really need an active, competent goalie and fast if they are to have a chance at making it to Brazil.

3 Comments

  1. Andrew Sidhom (@AndrewEGY)

    September 21, 2013 at 9:09 AM

    “It could be argued that Richard Kingson lost his place in the squad due to his club-lessness as much as his age of 35years (unlike in Egypt, in Ghana a player is on borrowed time as soon as he hits 30).”

    This part made me curious. I’d be interested to know what you think are the reasons behind that big difference in the age bar in Egypt and Ghana. Goalkeeping, especially, is a position where players usually play for a long time. Sherif Ekramy is 30 and his star has been fast on the rise only for the past year or two. He’s earned his place as Egypt’s #1 GK only this June. Our previous #1, El-Hadary, was 40 when Ekramy took his place. And it was only through his own decision & a rift with the coaching staff that this happened (though it’s possible that the reason he left was that he felt it was about to happen soon anyway). Still, some voices are still calling for his return to the national team right now, and he’s since changed his mind himself and said he’s available and hoped to be recalled !

  2. Kweku Zurek

    September 22, 2013 at 4:07 PM

    In most parts of the footballing world, pro-players are often accused of lowering their ages to have prolonged careers. Accusations of age cheating are very rife in Ghana, i think this is the rreason why Ghanaian fans are unforgiving with 30year-olds..

  3. Mohamed Hossam

    September 27, 2013 at 2:48 PM

    Thank goodness Egypt does not have anymore “goalkeeping issues” as we did in 2012.Sherif Ekramy is now the first choice goalkeeper.Although I am an Al-Ahly fan,I am sad that Abdel Wahid did not get his chance at all with the national team,he was always the second choice for the national team,he only earned 39 caps so far,yet Nader El Sayed (now retired) has 100+ and El Hadary has 130+.

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