Former Black Stars skipper, Asamoah Gyan has made his intention known that he desires to play at the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
In an interview with BBC journalist John Bennett, Gyan, who has not been active for two years, said he has been on a three-month fitness course to put him in shape for the competition which will start in November.
Asamoah Gyan is Africa’s highest scorer in the tournament with 6 goals, the first Ghanaian to score at the World Cup and most importantly his winner against the USA in 2010 qualified Ghana to the quarter-finals which made the country the third African side to achieve the feat.
The former Sunderland striker holds a high profile and his quality is never in doubt. However, leaving him out of the squad will do Ghana more good than harm.
Here are five reasons why Asamoah Gyan should not be part of the Black Stars World Cup squad
Otto is building a new team
Black Stars head coach, Otto Addo is beginning to make headway in his team building after picking the Black Stars from a shameful Africa Cup of Nations(AFCON) group stage exit to qualify them for the World Cup.
The German-trained gaffer is steadily having a good blend of young talents and ensuring that the team has a smooth transition.
Otto in his few games in charge has shown that he believes in the young talents in the Black Stars and he is ready to offer them maximum opportunity to help them develop.
The World Cup is a big stage and the required exposure for young players’ growth. With experienced players like Andrea Ayew, Jordan Ayew, Mubarak Wakaso and a few others still around, adding Asamoah Gyan will limit the slots Otto would have wanted to spend on Ghana’s future.
Not in the right shape
One of the most paramount conditions for every footballer is physique. It is the basic step in conditioning for players. Footballers are not supposed to be too lean or too big, their figures should give an idea of how fit they are to compete.
For Asamoah Gyan, he has not been in action for two years and therefore looks bloated. Getting into shape within 95 days looks quite difficult.
Probably he might still have his fantastic goal-scoring prowess but he does not appear as a player who would last for at least five minutes in a game.
Team harmony and unity
Aside from his age and injuries, another reason Gyan faded out of the Black Stars was due to an alleged feud with current Black Stars skipper, Dede Ayew.
Gyan was stripped of the captaincy for Ayew to lead the team during the 2019 AFCON in Egypt. His return means he will play under the former Swansea man’s leadership. Is another 2019 tournament disaster on the horizon?
Black Stars don’t need unnecessary attention and high expectation
The Black Stars are the lowest ranked team among the 32 countries set to participate in the World Cup. Ghana is an underdogs but having Africa’s World Cup top scorer in the team erases the tag.
In football especially in tournaments, underdogs tend to perform better because the least is expected of them. Gyan’s inclusion would put the Black Stars in check with the World expecting more of the Black Stars.
Avoidable selection headache
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Selecting a line-up for games would be a headache for the technical team. Would a coach bench a striker with the profile of Gyan in all three games? If it turns out like that and Ghana exit the group stage, the question will be why did the manager leave ‘a whole’ Asamoah Gyan on the bench? Or in a situation where Ghana stumbles in the first game, the manager might be forced to start Gyan, which any striker who would be benched for the 36-year-old would feel not good enough and disappointed.