Head coach of the Black Stars James Kwesi Appiah has explained the decision to start Joseph Attamah ahead of Harrison Afful in Ghana’s 1-1 draw against Congo in the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier on Friday.
Ghana’s hopes of making a fourth successive global football fiesta were left in jeopardy after the Black Stars played out a disappointing 1-1 stalemate with the Red Devils of Congo at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium on Friday.
But one major decision that took many Ghanaians by surprise prior to the game was when Columbus Crew defender Harrison Afful was benched for Istanbul Basaksehir centre back Joseph Attamah.
Speaking to reporters in the wake of the match, the former Asante Kotoko gaffer expatiated on why he opted for the ex-Tema Youth ace, whose blunder gifted Congo an early minute lead.
“The moment John Boye was declared out of the match we thought it was important to strengthen the central defence and that’s why we opted to start Attamah (Joseph) on the right hand side of defence.”
“Attamah was considered based on the defenders we have and he was doing well in training. Harrison wasn’t fully fit, so I had to give Attamah the nod, but as you can see, the face of the game changed the moment I brought on Harrison.”
“However, sometime as a coach, you look at the performance of players at the training ground before you decide who best fits to start,” Appiah concluded.
Ghana will enplane to Brazzaville for the return encounter on September 4.