Polo to equip young players with 'agoro' in new project
Black Stars and Hearts of Oak’s legend, Mohammed Ahmed, known in football circles as ‘Polo’, has put together a five-year strategic plan designed to unearth, nurture and develop football talents with flair, creativity and confidence required to turn them into great players locally and also very competitive at the international level.
When put into motion, Polo says he will seek collaboration with all regional football officers in Ghana and selected technical men in the regions to identify, select and nurture such youthful talents aged between 10 and 15 years.
One of Ghana's most gifted footballers ever, Polo says he will pay particular attention to technique and relevant skills which made Ghana footballers a delight to watch and made Ghanaian teams successful during his era.
According to Polo, nicknamed Dribbling Magician in his heyday, his “Agoro” project is a brand of football Ghana was known for but had been jettisoned over the period, which has culminated in Ghana's decline at the international stage. For the icon who won the 1978 Africa Cup of Nations with the Black Stars and league titles with
Hearts, Ghanaian players lacked the skills set that made Ghanaian teams to compete favourably with their peers at the international level.
Polo said he would seek financial and logistical support from corporate bodies and other philanthropists to help implement the project as soon as possible.
“There is a missing link in our current football which had undermine our quest to break the jinx surrounding our failure to win the AFCON and perform well at the FIFA World Cup.
“It shows clearly that we have not been researching to appreciate what has gone wrong over the years, hence my proposal to come out with this brand of 'Agoro' football which used to be our brand and made it possible for us to win four continental trophies even before Egypt and Cameroun started coming onto the scene,” Polo told the Graphic Sports in an exclusive interview in Accra.
According to Polo, his project is designed to bring together 500 young footballers where they would be placed in age groups and allowed to progress into youth teams at the under-17 to under-23 levels.
The 65-year-old, who coached Hearts, Great Olympics and Stade Malien in Mali, explained that his five-year projection would see players who were 10 years to reach age 15, those who started at 11 years to reach age 16 and those in the 12-year group would be 17 years by the end of the project and would be very ready for the national youth teams.
“I will be monitoring their progress to ensure that they blossom into a winsome side capable of competing favourably at all levels in football.
By so doing, the senior national team would have a talent pool of creative footballers with the requisite flair and confidence readily available to help Ghana break the jinx surrounding the country's inability to win the AFCON since we last won it in 1982,” he said.
“This brand of Agoro had been in existence over the period, but we lost focus and adopted a different brand for Ghana which has not been working for us at the international level. I researched into it during my professional career at the UAE and intend to re-introduce it as my contribution to Ghana football.”