Ghana to investigate Essien absence

The Ghana Football Association will investigate the absence of the Chelsea midfielder Michael Essien,
Internazionale's Sulley Muntari and the Rennes striker Asamoah Gyan from the squad which travelled to Luanda for yesterday's friendly against Angola.

The trio were not part of the group which left Accra on Monday for the game at the Estadio dos Coqueiros, but did not have the consent of head coach Milovan Rajevac to leave the squad.

A statement on the GFA website from the general secretary, Kofi Nsiah, read: "In accordance with prescribed Fifa regulations for the release of players for national team matches, the FA wrote to and secured the release of 20 players to honour the World Cup qualifying match against Mali on 15 November and the international friendly against Angola on 18 November.

"Unfortunately, three players, namely Michael Essien, Sulley Muntari and Asamoah Gyan, did not travel with the team to Angola on Monday night. The players stayed out without the permission of the head coach, Mr Milovan Rajevac. The FA views this act with great concern and will investigate the matter further to inform its next course of action."

George Weah, the former Fifa World Player of the Year, believes an African team could win next year's World Cup in South Africa. Africa has emerged as a major source of talent, with players such as Liberian-born Weah, Didier Drogba and Samuel Eto'o playing for some of Europe's leading clubs.

And while an African team has never advanced beyond the quarter-finals of a World Cup, Weah said the 2010 tournament could change that.

"We hope for that, it's not impossible. It's a difficult task but it's not impossible," Weah told reporters. "Ghana just won a junior World Cup. Why not?" Ghana won the under-20 World Cup last month.

Speaking to reporters after a news conference, Weah, who won European and World player of the year in 1995, said discipline and hard work were the keys to success. "Years ago, we couldn't partake in the best player of Europe and the world [competition]," he said. "It happened. There is a high possibility that an African team can win a World Cup if it can prepare well."

Weah hoped that the new stadiums being built for the World Cup and the African Nations Cup in Angola next year would lay the foundations for stronger African soccer. "I'm sure all of the infrastructure they leave here will give people jobs, allow children to play in stadiums that are being built," he said. "A lot of kids don't have opportunity to play on grass."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones