2019 AFCON: Don't blame Anas' documentary for Black Stars exit - Arhinful
Former Black Stars forward Augustine Arhinful has adviced Ghanaians to stop playing the victim after the senior national team were bundled out of the 2019 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) by the Carthage Eagles of Tunisia.
Some pundits have suggested that the Black Stars have been on the end of some unfair decisions by match officials since the premiere of an undercover documentary by Ghanaian investigative journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas which captured several African officials filmed taking cash.
The latest incident occurred in yesterday's 5-4 penalty shootout loss against Cameroon where some Ghanaians fans felt South African referee Victor Gomes wrongly disallowed a goal for a handball by Thomas Partey who set up Jordan Ayew. Video replays, though, showed the ball came off the Atletico Madrid man's chin.
However, Arhinful believes Partey was in an offside position when he first controlled the ball. He said: "The referee made the right decision because Partey was in an offside position when he received the ball in that move. Waiting to make that decision doesn't make the referee's decision wrong".
He also insists that some decisions by referee Gomes wen in favour of the Black Stars.
Arhinul said: "So, it's not like because of Anas' video the referees... What about the red card he did not show to Kassim Nuhu also and when the ball touched Kassim Nuhu's hand in the area before Tunisia scored their goal. Was that also because of Anas?
"There was a corner that John Boye's hand touched in the area, he did not whistle for a penalty. We should not look at that, we have lost and we must come back home and refocus our energies on how to recover and proceed".
Much of the investigation by Anas centred on referees freely accepting gifts of money, with scenes of officials taking cash before multiple domestic Ghanaian and international games.
Kenya's Adel Range Marwa lost his place at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia after being filmed receiving a $600 'gift'.
Anas' undercover team were also filmed handing over money in the referees' changing room just an hour before kick-off of a match in the regional West African Football Union (Wafu) Cup between Ghana and Mali.
The undercover reporters had been guided there by Charles Dowuna, a technical instructor - also Ghanaian - for the competition.
Dowuna received funds totalling some $2,500 during the 16-team tournament. The BBC has contacted Dowuna but he declined to respond.
On top of dozens of Ghanaian referees accepting money ahead of domestic matches, a game in African football's most important club competition is also highlighted by the investigation.
Ivory Coast referee Denis Dembele accepted $700 ahead of the Round of 32 clash between Ghana's Aduana Stars and Algeria's Entente Setif in this season's Champions League.