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African All Stars

Ghana’s Asamoah Gyan announces international retirement

7:17 PM WAT 20/05/2019
Asamoah Gyan
The Kayserispor forward is the Black Stars’ all-time leader in appearances and goals, having made his debut more than 16 years ago

Asamoah Gyan has announced his retirement from international football after 16-year career with the Ghana national team.

The Kayserispor forward, who made his debut in November 2003 against Somalia, has earned 106 caps for his country, scoring 51 goals.

Gyan is the Black Stars’ most-capped player and top scorer of all time, but has decided to hang up his international boots upon consultation with his family and team.

“My mother once told me, "you cannot tout a decision you did not take as betrayal, because you have to expect it" I still do not understand that statement anyway,” Gyan wrote in a statement.

“I cannot pretend to be happy. I would rather hurt myself emotionally and psychologically, over the years I served with an open heart and have given my all to the best of my ability in my quest to serving our great nation, Ghana. I have represented the proud colours of our country in 10 major tournaments from the Olympics, World Cups and in African Nations Cups with different coaches.

“In all, I would say the last years have been the proudest moments in my career as a captain under the managerial leadership of coach Akwasi Appiah. I stood solidly behind my coach during the difficult times in Brazil and in some cases supported the endeavours of the team financially when the need arose to make sure his tenure and my captaincy would not suffer challenges and to ride with the assertion, " A Ghanaian coach can do it.”

He added: “As an active footballer yet to retire, I have been in the team since 2003 and have played with some members of the technical team who were my seniors. Through such periods, there were no times substantive captains were part of a team in a tournament and had to surrender their captaincy to other players and served in different capacities.

“Mr. Richard Kingston and Stephen Appiah would be in the best position to understand this. My team, my family and fans have had reasons to whisper the trend of reportage and articles either to substantiate my exclusion or inclusion and again rumoured roles I am to play at the AFCON in Egypt. In all, my answers have been, "respect the decision of the coach because the records under the year per game minutes and goals for all attackers are evidence to guide his decision".

“Upon consultation with my family and team, and as an active footballer and captain of the national team, if the decision of the coach is to give captaincy of the tournament to another player while I am named in the team of the tournament,” he continued.

“I wish to recuse myself from the tournament.  I also wish to retire from the national team permanently; not pretending my presence would not fuel the purported undermining the country has seen under my captaincy.

“I would countinue to serve the country Ghana in other endeavours as a business man through various investments. I want to thank the father of the nation, His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, other former presidents H.E John Kufour, H.E J.J Rawlings, the late H.E Prof Atta Mills, H.E John Mahama, my teammates from2003 to date many of whom have become friends for life and all coaches I have worked with.

“I would like to also thank journalists and all my fans who have supported and travelled the world with the team. I wish the technical team and the players the best of luck.”