Late Monday morning 19th March 2012, and its official, the Ghana Football Association has parted ways with the Serbian head coach of the Black Stars, Goran Stevanovic! This is coming after weeks of speculations in the Ghanaian Sports media that the Serbian was on his way out of the Black Starts team. His assistant, Kwasi Appiah has been asked by the FA to take temporarily charge.
I am one of the many Ghanaian football enthusiasts who toasted to the success of Coach Plavi when he was appointed on 10th January, 2011. He managed 7 wins, 2 draws and 2 losses in all competitive matches he led the Black Stars to play. As to whether he was successful or not by those stats, I leave that to my cherished readers to judge. As for me, I have never really been a fan of any foreign coach handling the Black Stars and with that position clearly stated, let me add, I have no tears for Plavi!
And the nation must move on; the Black Stars must move on. The team has to be assembled in time to start the qualification to the next African Cup of Nations to be staged in South Africa in January and the next round of the World Cup qualifications. Time is of great essence, we have no luxury of toiling with the Black Stars now. We need a competent Plavi’s replacement and we need it almost immediately.
Many names have been bundled around. It gives me so much joy to hear the names of some of the coaches who are being linked to the Black Stars now. Former Brazil Captain, Dunga, Former France Captain, Marcel Desailly, Former Ghana Captain, Abedi Ayew Pele are, but a few of the names. Indeed, speculations are rife that the GFA has even sent emissaries to the former French and Chelsea star, Desailly to inform him of the Association’s decision to appoint him as the next Black Stars Coach. A decision I find rather wrong. In the best interest of the Black Stars and the nation, I believe Sellas Tetteh, the Gold Winning Coach of the Black Satellites is the best man for the Black Stars now.
Across the length and breadth of the nation, there is no better groomed Ghanaian coach to lead the Black Stars now but Sellas Tetteh. Borbor as he is affectionately called has gone through the mill, coached teams at all levels, understudied a lot of coaches, both local and foreign and he is also ready to serve the nation as the next Black Stars Coach.
Sellas Tetteh started his illustrious coaching career with Kotobabi Powerlines in 1995 after successful football career in Bangladesh, Nigeria, and Ghana. In his very first season, he managed to gain qualification for Powerlines from the third division to the second division. He then joined Liberty Professionals and managed to bring the team to the elite division in 1999.
Selas is credited with the nurturing of key Black Stars players like Asamoah Gyan, Michael Essien, Kwadwo Asamoah, and Derek Boateng among others during his time with the Dansoman-based Liberty Professionals.
In 2001, Sellas Tetteh was invited to assist then Black Starlets Coach, Oti Akenten. A year later he was given full responsibility of the team. With his output as his foremost testament, he was again promoted as the substantive coach of the National Under 23 Team, the Black Meteors and also as the Assistant Coach of the Black Stars, under Coach Ralph Zumdich (the Cat).
Aside Ralph Zumdich, Sells Tetteh also understudied and assisted Mariano Barretto, Ratomir Dukovic, and Claude Leroy during their time as Coaches of the Black Stars. He was even given temporary charge of the team during the initial stages of the qualification series for the 2010 Afcon/ World Cup. A job he decently performed!
And when later he was re-assigned to the Black Satellites, the National Under 20 team, Sellas Tetteh finally wrote his name in Gold! He led the team to win gold at the WAFU tournament, gold at the African tournament in Rwanda, and gold at the World tournament in Egypt. Key members of the current Black Stars’ team like Andre Dede Ayew, Emmanuel Agyeman Badu, Jonathan Mensah, Daniel Nii Adjei, are some of the players he nurtured at the Under 20 level.
Sellas Tetteh was later appointed as the head coach of the Rwandan National Team. His experience at that level too will come in handy should he be given the opportunity to serve the nation. Currently, he is the Technical Director of Liberty Professionals, but Sellas has never hidden his desire to return to the bench of the Black Stars.
He has served at virtually all levels of the game in Ghana, from the 3rd division level to the Black Stars level. He was with the Black Stars at the 2006 World Cup. He is the only African Coach to have won Gold at the Under 20 level. Ghana and Africa’s best coach in 2009. What else has Sellas Tetteh got to learn? The time to give him the chance to prove what he can do as the substantive Coach of the Black Stars is now. It is indeed, Sellas Tetteh’s time! God bless our homeland Ghana.
By Nii Ayi Anteh