March 20, 2023

Hughton Explains Why No Local Player Was Included In 25-Man Squad For AFCON Qualifiers

Following the release of the names of the 25-man squad for the 2023 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifiers against Angola, a section of Ghanaians expressed disappointment at the absence of any local league player on the list.


During the unveiling ceremony of the new Black Stars head coach, Chris Hughton used the need for consistency as his justification.


He said he had a lot of options, however, he was confined to just 25 players which he admitted was quite a difficult choice to make.


He said he had at least four players he could have added if he had the option, however, there was the need to ensure consistency in the squad. 


From his submissions, it could be deduced that he was not familiar with the local players, thereby their exclusion.


He, therefore, promised to have time for the local matches and clubs during his stay in Ghana.


“I will be spending more time in Ghana, I will be watching more games, I will be attending more club games and leagues far better…In my new role, I will be paying very much attention to the game here…I will do my very best to make sure that I see as much football here as possible.”


Interference In Player Selection

There have been allegations of interference in the selection of players for games by the Ghana Football Association (GFA) and a question about this was posed to Chris.


Asked how he would manage such interference, he noted the GFA was quite an important part that cannot be done away with in his work and the well-being of the Black Stars.


“For the black stars to do well and achieve what we want to achieve, this is mostly about the players and the players performing, it’s about the technical staff, the supporters around but it’s also very much about support from the Association and it’s very difficult to go in the direction you want to if you don’t have all of them aligned.”


So far, he indicated that the “communication I have had with the Association has been good”.


He also observes he will be questioned by the public over his decisions but noted that “all we want to see is winning football and that starts with the correct preparation of the team, using the players to the best of their ability and picking the players that suit the kind of type of players that we have.”



Source: Fuseini

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