Indomitable Lions have become Black Stars’ Waterloo in Soccer-Bernard Asubonteng

As humans begin their steady journey, at least, from birth toward death, uncountable events happen along the entire lifespan.

Some of these happenings are wrapped in business  and political success stories; the birth of a child; happy marriage rites; winning lottery, sports victories; while others border on deaths, heartbreaks, failures, and the like. Success and failure are intrinsic part of human life. Where there is success, there is failure, too. In short, from cradle to grave, every human endeavour has the potential for success and failure as well. Indeed, the two maybe mutually exclusive yet each has strong influence on the other.

Achieving something successful in life evokes thrilling feelings, whereas failing brings disappointments or sadness. However, we also have to understand that almost all failures are learning curve experiences.  A cadre of thinkers has observed that there is virtue in failure. For many people, the more failure comes their way, the more they come back to their senses. To wit, failure is the most effective teacher in our lives, especially if the failing parties/person is more than willing to learn from the failures or errors.

Regrettably, the national soccer team—Black Stars—in locked step with GFA, have consistently shown over the years that there is nothing sensible for them to learn from the litanies of their indefensible failures in representing the flag of Ghana in football. The tactless Ghana soccer officials and their sorry current crop of predominantly indiscipline Black Stars players’ inability to learn useful lesson(s) from many of their pathetic losing performances is why the once-dreaded Ghana soccer has become a cannon fodder for the Indomitable Lions of Cameroon, and now the Cranes of Uganda, Zambia, and many others, are beginning to join the long lists of the Black Stars’ abusers.

 It’s not a good feeling to sound pessimistic, but the truth is that Ghana soccer has been declining for years now but it is quite perplexing to see GFA, including its overrated professional players, and some Ghanaian soccer fans still in denial. The national soccer team is normally the mirror via which the world looks at the nation’s football progress, but the team is failing when it matters most.  Obviously, they’re not smarting from all these failures in the past 30 years. Among some of the heart-rending failures are the perennially subpar nature of the nation’s soccer fields, and the non-existence of any serious development of youth football academies (colts) to help feed the poorly-organized local premier league system across the country.

With straight face, can any soccer official with commonsense tell the taxpaying Ghanaians why for so long the Cameroun’s Indomitable Lions have been allowed to turn Ghana soccer team into a punching bag, mercilessly hitting us hard at will and in the process humiliating soccer-frenzy Ghanaian fans?

It has become an unfortunate norm in this era that whenever the Black Stars engage in any soccer encounter with the Indomitable Lions, the guaranteed outcome is the defeat of the Black Stars. For those Ghanaians who still want to live in the fantasy universe, it is time they remove their partisan blinders; think out the box; and accept the cold fact that the Cameroon’s national football team is the Black Stars’ ‘waterloo’ plain and simple! When is the last time Black Stars overrun the Indomitable Lions in competitive soccer event? Remember the 2008 AFCON semis in Ghana?

Over the years, the Cameroonians appear to have proven that they can assemble amateur footballers at any time to face Ghana and still beat our butt hands down. Briefly go through the stats between the two soccer rivals; the raw evidence is there. The Cameroons, and many other soccer teams in Africa have learned how to beat Ghana effortlessly, but Ghana FA and its pampered so-called professional footballers have not learned how to outfox their counterparts in this new soccer terrain.

For one thing, the mental fortitude of today’s Ghanaian footballers—in Europe—is dead gone in the country’s soccer. It is one of the reasons the emphasis and the attraction now are on the foreign or European football. Another thing is GFA is severely handicapped because of corruption, lack of creativity, and inept management practices; yet, somehow deluded itself into thinking its officials are the best soccer administrators the country has ever had. When criticized under any circumstance, the GFA leaders will not waste a heartbeat to brag that under their leadership Ghana had appeared not only once or twice, but three consecutive times at the World Cup soccer event. What these “suckers” ignore to point out is that in soccer it is all about the silverwares. When is the last time the Black Stars won a Cup? Please, give some of us a break!

Like Razak Barimah, that semi-literate, below-average current Black Stars’ goalie, who recently went on incoherent tirades against his critics on the social media, the GFA, no doubt, expects every taxpaying critics to “shut the f…up” and let it keeps running Ghana football deep into an abyss. With the combinations of these self-important and untouchable attitudes orbiting around Ghana FA officials and its below par players, does any level-headed soccer fan wonder why the Black Stars have become the timid wife of the abusive Indomitable Lions of Cameroon? Let’s sing requiem hymn for Ghana soccer till the country hires patriotic-minded, independent local coach, to begin with.

The writer Bernard Asubonteng is United States-based social critic; he can be reached: b.asubonteng@gmail.com