Chief Executive Officer of Databank Kojo Addae-Mensah believes Asamoah Gyan’s record in the FIFA World Cup makes him arguably the greatest Ghanaian player of all time.
Gyan, 32, overtook Cameroon legend Roger Miller as Africa’s top scorer in World Cup history after he grabbed a consolation in Ghana’s 2-1 defeat to Portugal during the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil – a goal that took his tally to six from three tournaments.
According to the Databank chief, who is a sports enthusiast, the performance of African players at the ongoing global football fiesta has given him enough ground to stand on his claim that no Ghanaian player comes close to the Kayserispor forward in terms of greatness and achievement.
Mr. Addae-Mensah expressed his displeasure over Africa’s inability to make it to the next round of the competition in Russia, insisting that players from the continent lack the mental fortitude to withstand the pressure of performing at the global stage – citing that Gyan’s record in the tournament gives him edge over any other Ghanaian to have graced the green turf.
“It’s a mental issue. We are one of the most gifted people on earth when it comes to football but we have a mental issue and it baffles me because these boys are all playing in Europe,” Mr. Addae-Mensah told Moses Antwi Benefo on Happy FM’s ‘Kojo’s Thoughts’
“All of them especially our West African neighbours Nigerians and Senegal. All the players play in Europe, there is no single player who plies his trade in Africa and when you are in Europe your mentality is positive. I don’t know if their minds change whenever their plane land on the African continent or what we call African mentality, what is that?
“Our mental strength is poor, Senegal’s own was poorer even though they were eliminated via the fair play rule same as Nigeria. Look at the Nigerian team, they are all playing in Europe but they have mental issues. I don’t get it and I hope now people will be respecting my view that Asamoah Gyan is probably and arguably the greatest Ghanaian player of all time.”
“Three World Cups, how many goals has he scored…to score a goal at the World Cup is no easy job. When the players are playing in Europe, you will see them differently, look at someone like Fernandinho, what did he do, he did virtually nothing at the World Cup stage but he is a different player altogether for Manchester City in the English Premier League.”
The countries that represented the continent; namely Nigeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Senegal and Egypt were all crashed out of the competition in the group stage for the first time since 1982.