Sports News of Wed, 29 Aug 201823

Coach Kwesi Appiah denies rift with senior Black Stars players

Head Coach of the Black Stars Kwesi Appiah has denied reports of a rift between himself and the top players of the team after their exclusions sparked widespread criticisms.

Coach Kwesi Appiah excluded captain Asamoah Gyan, Andre Ayew, Jordan Ayew, Mubarak Wakaso and Jonathan Mensah from his squad to face Kenya in next month's Africa Cup of Nations qualifier.

The 58-year-old is believed to have a frosty relationship with the Ayew brothers hence the consistent omission of the pair from the team.

Appiah rejected those claims insisting he is building a new team and wants to give an opportunity to the younger ones.

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“We are building the team for 2019 and beyond and so the fact that a player is absent today doesn’t mean the door is perpetually closed to that player," Appiah stated.

“I don’t think it makes sense for a coach to fight a player; players don’t give their best shots in such cases; it is neither here nor there for people to think a player is not in a team because there is tension between the coach and the player," he added.

Asamoah Gyan and the Ayew brothers have not featured for the Black Stars since the World Cup qualifier against Congo in Kumasi.

Meanwhile, coach Kwesi Appiah has named a 21 man squad for the Cup of Nations qualifier against Kenya next month. The team includes Kwadwo Asamoah who is returning to the side for the first time since 2014.

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