After sealing Ghana's qualification to Brazil 2014, one appreciative football observer provides the former Ghana international a few kind words and timely counsel
Man, I have never felt prouder stringing together any group of words as I am now! Here I sit, beaming at the very fact that one of my own kith has been able to lead the Black Stars to the World Cup against all odds.
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Mo ne yor, menua.
Obor morden waa, anyemi!
It's incredible just how far you've come from being an 'obroni's smallboy' (no disrespect intended) to becoming a self-made 'bossu'. Indeed, challenges to your success have existed since the very day of your appointment, with many doubting your expertise and ability to rub shoulders with the big boys of international football.
You proved your worth, though, getting us to the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations with minimal fuss and holding your own against the likes of mighty Claude Le Roy at the competition itself. It was only unfortunate that our campaign at that tournament had to end the way it did.
As expected, though, the wolves were on your back immediately afterwards, seeking to tear you apart piece-by-piece at the post-tournament presser in Accra, only for you to swat them all aside with consummate ease - with the able backing of Kwesi Nyantakyi and Sannie Daara, of course.
And so #DestinationBrazil2014 continued after that blip, with the country ultimately wrapping up a successful World Cup qualification campaign that saw the Black Stars win six of eight games, scoring a whopping 25 goals, and conceding just six.
Even so, the ride wasn't entirely rid of troubles. Issues of player dissent and controversy involving the likes of Sulley Muntari and the Ayew brothers were amicably resolved, but not without a great deal of potentially disruptive brouhaha.
While your tactical genius helped reap results on the pitch, your equally impressive man-management skills did lots to massage these egos. The bloody-minded boldness that saw you include a few new faces, some of whom have proved delightful revelations, has been commendable as well.
There have been some great moments, too: the heavy wins at home over Lesotho, Sudan, and Egypt, as well as the cold, cold revenge served to the 'mouth-mouth' Zambians in Kumasi.
Embarrassments, too, have occurred.
|For those faceless doubting Thomases and saboteurs who opine that you would flop on the global stage without the assistance supervision of a [foreign] technical director, they'd only get to observe in shame as you spank European and South American superpowers
You scored negative marks in the fashion section with some poor tastes at least twice, namely the XXL-sized necktie you donned against DR Congo at this year's Afcon, and that MTTU-style vest-over-shirt thing you did when we played the Chipolopolo at home (just what were you thinking on both occasions, man?). There was also that incredibly weird decision of yours to experiment with Kwadwo Asamoah at left-back earlier this year in South Africa and, at the same competition, the unfathomable losses to traditionally inferior sides Burkina Faso and Mali.
But, of course, you rose above all of those obstacles, brilliant as you are, to the heights you currently occupy. Primarily thanks to you, we're heading off to a third consecutive Mundial, and we are sure you would excel there as well. Before then, though, there are a few things you ought to mark on your pre-Brazil 2014 to-do list.
First, you should be able to hone the few rough edges that remain to your game. Your tactics and selection decisions have occasionally proven suspect, giving your most passionate critics ammunition to fire at you with. Also, you'd need to work on your post-match interview speeches. Trust me, those monotonous "We thank God for this victory" and "My boys did their best today" lines simply wouldn't cut it at the World Cup, so try rehearsing something more articulate, complex, and lively.*
Even more importantly (from my own perspective), you'd have all the time in the world between now and June 2014 to pick some wardrobe tips from fashion savant Kofi Okyere Darko (KOD) - Michael Essien should have his contact address, in case you'd need it - along with a couple of $10,000-priced three-piece suits. With the bonus you've received for Ghana's qualification ($300,000 I hear, true?) you could grab some of those for your World Cup luggage.
That aside, I believe you're good to go.
For those faceless doubting Thomases and saboteurs who opine that you would flop on the global stage without the assistance supervision of a [foreign] technical director, they'd only get to observe in shame as you spank European and South American superpowers hard on their bums one after the other en route to glory.
Until then, we can only wait and hope to reach the semis in Brazil -and beyond!
Your biggest fan.
*Try: "What the hell was that refereeing decision about? I swear I could have punched him square in the jaw had that official been in my reach! Crap." Of course, you wouldn't really mean those words, but if you deliver them in as Mourinho-esque a manner as you can fake, it would sound threatening enough. Just a suggestion, though.