Acheampong denies Otto Addo allegation
An Executive Council member (ExCo) of the Ghana Football Association (GFA), Frederick Acheampong, has denied allegations linking him to how he purportedly doubted the competence of former Black Stars coach, Otto Addo, at the Qatar 2022 FIFA Word Cup.
The former Ashantigold CEO is alleged to have said that the Black Stars early exit from the World Cup was mainly due to the incompetence of the Borussia Dortmund scout.
However, speaking to the Daily Graphic in an interview yesterday, Mr Acheampong was surprised about how he was taken out of context and also wondered why some media portals would go to the extent of tarnishing his reputation though he never said what was attributed to him.
He said he never denigrated Otto Addo in any way in the said interview but rather wished that the 47-year-old coach would have continued as the coach of the national team in order to learn from his mistakes at the tournament.
“My wish was that Otto Addo didn’t leave so that he would learn from the mistakes he made in the Portugal, South Korea and the Uruguay games. If you give him these same games to play again I’m sure he wouldn’t repeat those mistakes again,” he explained.
“That is what Senegal did with Aliou Cisse. When they gave the team to him initially he made mistakes but over the years he has gained experience,” he noted.
Mr Acheampong said he only asked questions about the coach’s substitutions in the first game against Portugal which cost us, as well as the rationale behind playing Baba Rahman in the last game instead of Gideon Mensah, who played well in Ghana’s victory against South Korea.
“I was asked whether I was happy with what I saw and I said I feel that, for instance, in our game against Portugal the coach made some instant substitutions after we equalised which, I think, brought the momentum of the team down and Portugal capitalised on that to beat us.
“Even in our last game against Uruguay, I didn’t expect to see Baba Rahman because I saw Gideon Mensah who played in our second game and we won, so Ghanaians were expecting that he would start,” he pointed out.
“So, when I saw Baba Rahman I asked people close to the team and I was told that the coach said he wanted to attack and Baba Rahman was the best left-back when it comes to offensive play,” he added.
The GFA ExCo member noted that the rampant changes of coaches was affecting the Black Stars, hence his wish to have seen Otto Addo stay on to gain more experience.
He praised Coach Addo for the remarkable work he did which led to the improvement of the senior national team as against what was witnessed at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Cameroun where Ghana exited at the group stage without winning a single game.
“If you compare this team to the one at the AFCON it is clear that there has been a massive improvement and I think that he’s worked a lot on the team than when we went to the AFCON because at the AFCON we couldn’t even win one game. But at the World Cup, at least, we won a game.