By Patrick Akoto
Ex-Ghana FA boss Nyaho Tamakloe has rubbished calls for the return of ‘old’ players into the national team.
The Black Stars 1-0 defeat to African Champions Zambian in a 2014 World Cup qualifier last month has re-ignited the age-long debate of infusing experience with youth exuberance in the set-up.
There have been growing calls for the inclusion of some experienced players into the team ahead of the qualifiers for the 2013 African Cup of Nations and to aid the country’s ambition of making a successive third World Cup appearance.
Jobless John Pantsil, Richard Kingston and Quincy Owusu-Abeyie have been cited as possible returnees with Hearts of Oak midfielder Laryea Kingston anxious to end a two-year absence from the Black Stars.
Michael Essien has not played for the team since he recovered from a long injury while Captain John Mensah watched the opening qualifiers for Brazil 2014 against Lesotho and Zambia from the stands due to a troublesome back problem.
But the controversial ex-Ghana chief wants coach Kwesi Appiah to shut the door on these players and focus on the young ones.
“For me that is not an argument. We have to phase out the old players and concentrate on young players. In modern football, its young people who do well,” Tamakloe said
“They have more strength, they can run, they don’t get tired easily and they have stamina.
“This is simple in medicine, the way a 20 year old can run, a 40 year old cannot. Most of these players are over 40 years old. Don’t you see the young player who was given a chance against Lesotho? Christian Atsu, these are the kind of players we need now,”
“Even if you watched the recent European Championships, all the teams that had old players were knocked out.”
He added: “We have to strengthen the Black Stars with a lot of young players who are fresh and allow them to know the terrain.
“In modern football, you need one or two experienced players and the rest have to be young if you want to succeed,”
“I picked John Mensah into the Black Stars and I left the Black Stars like ten years ago, and he was playing for many years before we brought him into the Black Stars,”
“Derek Boateng, was I not the one who called him into Black Stars? These people are old, forget them,”