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It has been argued that the current generation of Ghana players are money-oriented and that is having an adverse effect on their performance hence bonuses should be struck out

By Dennis Mirpuri

In the last 31 years, several generations of Black Stars squads have tried to replicate the success story of the national teams that won the 1963, 1965, 1978 and 1982 Africa Cup of Nations, but have failed to exhibit the same level of devotion and passion at the last few Afcon competitions.

After a few discussions with some retired national footballers, I can confirm that the Golden Generations of Ghana squads that won the four continental trophies were never paid winning bonuses for matches yet claimed the ultimate at those continental championships upon the promise of receiving handsome rewards.

But, the current generation of Black Stars teams expect the Sports Ministry to fund their participation at competitions and pay its players bonuses for winning matches even if they fail to win the trophy. After this year’s Afcon in South Africa, where government paid each player $50,000 for reaching the semi-finals, the Ghana FA complained of some players not giving their 100 percent commitment during matches at the competition.

As controversial as this may sound, most Black Stars players remain unconcerned returning to Ghana without a trophy after Afcon competitions because they still benefit by receiving winning bonuses for matches they triumphed in.

Maybe it is high time the Elvis Afriyie Ankrah-led Sports Ministry started considering abolishing the system of paying Black Stars teams bonuses for winning matches and revert to the old system of rewarding senior national teams that return from competitions with trophies.

Perhaps, this will reveal Black Stars players who are truly dedicated to the course of decorating the Ghana FA’s trophy cabinet and restoring the nation’s long lost pride in African football.

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