Day in and day out, black power known as ‘JUJU’ has become the headline in African football.
The Ghana senior national soccer team, Black Stars cannot be singled out from juju allegations in every tournament.
Recent revelations made by former Black Stars midfielder, Derek Boateng have disclosed how the team organized a demonstration to force the current captain Andre Dede Ayew to be the first player to touch down on the pitch before Ghana’s narrow defeat to Zambia over ‘JUJU’ allegations.
Before Derek’s revelation, the then head coach, Goran Stevanovic had also uncovered how some of the players used ‘Black Power’ against their teammates.
A conversation with Derek Boateng on GTV+ Saving Our Passion show forced the former Black Stars midfielder to make a deep explanation of what exactly happened before the game against Zambia, the winners of the 2012 AFCON.
“Before that game, we had 45 minutes to do the warm-up. The Zambians were on the field and we were also supposed to come out. Kwasi Appiah was the one to take us through the warm-up and he was standing at the entrance of the tunnel. I came on the field along with Jonathan Mensah or somebody else. We were standing and waiting for the rest of the players. Everyone was saying they will not go on the field first until Andre Ayew comes out,” Boateng said.
Other information during that time confirmed that some Black Stars players tipped the son of Abedi Pele, Andre Dede Ayew, who powered the team into the semi-finals with the decisive strike in the quarter-final 2-1 victory against Tunisia, had used ‘JUJU’ against them, and the only strategy to expose and destroy his powers was to force him to come out from the dressing room first.
The allegations and the mindset delayed the team to shake up for only 15 minutes before the clash against the Copper bullets of Zambia which Ghana lost to Muyoka’s goal after Asamoah Gyan had squandered a first-half penalty kick, according to Derek Boateng.
“For about 15 to 20 minutes, we were just standing there and without doing the warm-up. So the only warm-up we did in the game was for about 10 to 15 minutes. A lot of the players said they will not be the first to go on the field until Dede Ayew did.”
“So you see some of them sitting on the toilet, some standing on the side, and some sitting. So it was very disturbing. Goran was the coach and he could not understand what was going on. So after the game, I heard a lot of voices. I flipped up and blasted everybody. After the game, Nyatankyi (the GFA President) came to me and asked me what happened and I told him what exactly happened.”
The midfielder also explained how the team regretted their deeds following the 1-0 defeat to Zambia.
“In the dressing room after the game, I saw that people are sitting down with regret. But why do you regret it when you knew what you were doing was not good? But it was not a club side, this was Ghana. It is not about you but it is about the whole nation. So it was disturbing some of the things that happened in camp and people don’t come out to talk about it. For me, it is what it is. We have finished our careers and I can say whatever I want to say. Nobody can stop me,” he summed up
After Ghana’s AFCON exit, coach Goran Stevanovic cried out to call for a change in the mindset of some players on ‘Black Power’.
“We all need to help in changing some players’ mentality about using ‘black power’ to destroy themselves, and also make sure we instill discipline and respect for each other,” He stated in a leaked technical report to the former administration of the Ghana Football Association led by Kwasi Nyantakyi.
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