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African All Stars

‘Salisu said he won’t play’ - Grunsah reveals failed Ghana attempt for Southampton star

8:26 PM GMT 26/01/2022
Mohammed Salisu Southampton 2021-22
An update has been given on the 22-year-old’s continuous refusal to avail himself for international duty

Renowned Ghanaian football administrator Alhaji Karim Grunsah reveals he is staying away from Ghana’s quest to lure Southampton defender Mohammed Salisu to commit to the Black Stars.

The centre-back has rejected multiple attempts, including two call-ups, to play international football for the West Africans since making his professional breakthrough with Spanish La Liga fold Real Valladolid in 2019.

Most recently, he turned down an opportunity to join the Black Stars for the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations tournament in Cameroon.

"The Black Stars [Management Committee] Chairman [George Amoakoh] tasked me to speak to Salisu because he's from Kumasi. I called his dad and he linked me to him. Salisu flatly told me to stay away from this matter. He questioned me that if he were my son, would I advise him to play for Ghana?” Grunsah, president of Ghana Premier League side King Faisal, told Atinka FM.

“I'm not the only person who has spoken to him. I know [former Ghana coach] CK Akonnor went to him [during his tenure as coach], he [Salisu] said he won't play. Even the GFA president [Kurt Okraku] said he found where his mother stays and went to her. I don't know what happened, but Salisu is not ready to play.

"He was angry when I called him. He insisted several times that I should stay out of the matter because he doesn't want to have any problem with me. I'm not going to involve myself in his matter again. I don't know the problem he has with the GFA but I will not call him again."

While Salisu has turned down all invitations so far, he has not slammed the door of turning out for the Black Stars in the future.

“I’ll be so proud to play for my country, to play with Ghana, the national team,” Salisu told MozzartSport Kenya in April last year.

“But I think this is not the right moment to play in the national team. I think I need to focus on the club side because I am young, I think I need to focus on the club first and then after, when everything is fine, I can go and play for Ghana.”

So far this season, Salisu, 22, has made 21 Premier League appearances for Southampton.