There are many things that make me proud to be a Ghanaian; don't get me started! And don't get me wrong; there are many things I wish I could kick the behind of my country to do better and I continue to hope we will eventually catch on, but one cannot argue that for a small country with very limited resources, we have done very well when it comes to this sport.
There were times in our history as a race, when sports were the ultimate show of prowess. Dare I say that within us still lays that understanding that sports is the ultimate test of capabilities and the potential of the human spirit to excel.
Again, Ghana has qualified for the World Cup! Against all odds, this small country has made waves in tournaments past. Some may argue all sorts of reasons why we did not progress in the last cup played in South Africa. Spanning from a lack of adequate resources and preparation at the training level, to the capability of the opponent, to the nuanced games by the established powers to keep an African team out!
But then we beat the United States' team, didn't we? Ghana and the United States will meet again in Brazil! Ghana is in the group of death they say. Do you think Ghana will make it to the next round? Ghana is not the only African team that has qualified, our neighbors Cote d'ivoire and Nigeria, has as well, and in fact, Nigeria will be playing a friendly with the U.S. on the 7th of June, before the take off in Brazil. But I say Ghana is the team to fear. BE VERY AFRAID.
What do we make of Ghana's friendly play with South Korea in Miami just before the World Cup? Is Ghana hoping to intimidate the United States by playing ball right in its backyard? Will the Americans take the opportunity to watch the game of Ghana and take final notes? I bet the U.S. team will be taking notes feverishly! Is this a wise move by Ghana, to show off its skills and potential so close to the game, or is this a strategy of beating our chest to scare the opponent?
Ghana is confident that the United States, though a worthy opponent, will be no match for the skill of the side. More resources and all! The U.S. is slowly waking up to this game that the rest of the world have been so hooked on to. There are many Americans who yearn to enjoy the beauty of the sport and witness a team like Ghana's Black stars play beautiful football! Well, this is the opportunity! Finally, Americans can tune in, June 9th, when Ghana plays South Korea! American should pay attention because this team has stopped it from progressing in this cup before and is likely to do so again!
For all Africans, this is an opportunity to support a team from the continent that represents the aspirations of the entire continent! Don't only wait to support the team in Brazil, the game starts here and for those who will not be going to Brazil, this is an opportunity to see the team in action and to also engage with the team.
For Ghanaians in the United States? Well, need I say more? That there is a bus leaving the DC area and New York to Miami? I am eager to meet Dede Ayew and Asamoah Gyan. I need to express my admirations and admonition to those two gentlemen! I expect so much more this time, seeing that they have tasted this victory before, they need to go further, or at the very least, beat the United States!
Selom Coffie, the coordinator of the games for the International Youth and Sports organization (IYSO), the organization that is bringing this game to us, in collaboration with the Ghana football association, the Ministry of Youth and Sports and the Ghana embassy in the United States; assured me during a call that this was a game not to be missed! I could hear the excitement in his background as I spoke with him on the phone. 'what's the noise in the background?' I asked... ' People wanting tickets to attend the match!' he responded. 'I need a ticket!' I interjected...
I need to see Asamoah Gyan dance Azonto in Person... Miami, here we come!