Five oldest debutants for Black Stars
There were two debutants on Saturday as Ghana beat the Harambee Stars of Kenya at the Accra Sports Stadium in the final Group F qualifier for the AFCON 2019.
Ironically, the two players namely Caleb Ansah Ekuban of Trabzonspor in Turkey and Al Jazira winger Ernest Asante fall into the category of players who made their first senior national team appearance at a ripe age.
Sports writer Edmund Okai Gyimah brings to you the five oldest players to make their Black Stars maiden appearance.
1. Ernest Asante 30 years 38 days
Al Jazira winger Ernest Asante is officially the top of the five oldest players to make their Black Stars debut.
The mercurial winger make his bow at the Accra Sports Stadium when he replaced Jordan Ayew in the 75th minute. Asante as a much younger age was arguably Africa’s best player in Scandinavia but with all these he was never considered for Black Stars. Who knows? the Black Stars coaches might have seen something different now.
2. Lloyd Owusu – 29 years, 230 days
Few months to his 30th birthday, striker Lloyd Owusu made his Black Stars debut which was a trial match against German side Stuttgart on April 26. 2006 . Owusu was then playing for Brentford.
He tore his ligaments in his left knee which effectively ruled him out of the squad for the global showpiece.
3. Manuel Junior Agogo – 26 years, 289 days
Though a very late developer, Agogo became a household name in Ghana after some breathtaking performances in the colours of the Black Stars.
A typical old-fashioned English centre-forward , the clean shaven and bulky Agogo possesses strength, eye for goal and was able to take on defenders.
He had his Black Stars debut against French side OJ Nice on May 17, 2006 but could not make up the Black Stars squad for the global showpiece. The striker became an integral part of the team after the Mundial.
4. Derek Asamoah – 25 years, 262 days
The retired striker was in and out of the Black Stars after his heroics in the 2006 World Cup in Germany.
Asamoah was among a host of new players invited by the Black Stars technical team for friendly games in the Far East. The former Shrewsbury Town and OJ Nice forward made his debut in the friendly game against Japan at the Yokohama Stadium in October 4, 2006.
5. Caleb Ansah Ekuban 25 years
The Ghanaian forward who was born in Villafranca Verona made his Ghana Black Stars debut against the Harambee Stars of Kenya on his 25th birthday.
The ambidextrous attacker featured for the first time for Ghana on March 23, 2019, the exact day he was celebrating his birthday.
Ekuban replaced the inefficient Emmanuel Boateng in the 60th minute and made an impact by scoring the winner for Ghana in the 88th minute.