Newly appointed Black Stars Coach, James Kwesi Appiah has brought a sense of hope among Ghanaians who have been looking forward to the return of suspended Black Stars players; Kevin-Prince Boateng and Sulley Muntari. Coach Kwesi Appiah has suggested that the suspended players will be considered for selection provided their performances merit a call-up.
Sulley Muntari and Kevin-Prince Boateng were suspended indefinitely from the team after an incident during the 2014 World Cup campaign. Muntari was suspended over an attack on Black Stars management committee member Moses Armah over issues of unpaid bonuses. Boateng on his own part, verbally abused Coach Kwesi Appiah who was in his first stint as Black Stars manager then.
The two players had been summoned before the 2014 World Cup Commission but they snubbed the summons, as well as refused to apologize. The act of the duo which was deemed irresponsible by stakeholders, had earned them the distaste of football authorities and Ghanaians at large.
Sulley Muntari later sent in an apology letter to authorities after two years of defiance. The 32-year-old had rendered an unqualified apology to the GFA and Ghanaians, pleading for a return to the team. Kevin Prince Boateng also declared willingness to return to the team in several interviews.
However, the GFA remained indifferent towards their apologies despite calls by several stakeholders, including Black Stars players Asamoah Gyan and Dede Ayew, for reconsideration.
But new coach Kwesi Appiah says the duo might return to the team after all. He says he won’t hesitate to recall the duo if they merit the situation. The new coach has also learned from his past mistakes during his first stint as Black Stars coach, regarding the unfortunate circumstances that surrounded the experience.
Kwesi Appiah who was approved as the new manager for the Black Stars on April 4, 2017, has signed a two-year deal with the executive committee of the GFA. He was subsequently unveiled as the coach of Black Stars on May 16, 2017, during an event at the Ghana FA secretariat.
During the event, the coach was entrusted with the tough responsibility to qualify the team for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon, as well as the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.
Ibrahim Tanko and Maxwell Konadu have been named first and second assistants coaches respectively, while former captain Stephen Appiah was appointed to coordinate between the technical team and the playing body.