Coach of the Ghana Black Stars, James Kwesi Appiah has pruned his squad ahead of the 2019 AFCON qualifier against Ethiopia in Kumasi on Sunday, June 11, 2017. Denmark-based keeper Adam Kwarasey has been given permission to be absent, while Right to Dream graduate Godsway Donyoh has been excluded because of an injury he picked up while playing for FC Nordsjaelland in the Danish league. Mohammed Abu, another Right to Dream product, will, however, join the team in the USA ahead of the friendlies against Mexico on June 28th and USA on July 1.

Interestingly, David Accam, who was dropped out of the initial team has been given a late call-up and will join the team for the friendly games in the United States later this month. It came as a surprise when Accam was excluded from the list, as he can be considered as the most consistent Ghanaian striker now. Accam who is also a graduate of the prestigious Right to Dream Academy plays for Chicago Fire in the MLS. The Ghanaian international has registered seven goals and four assists through 14 games for Fire already this season. In May, David etched his name in Chicago Fire history by becoming the club’s first player to score in five consecutive matches. Accam is on course to better the 10 goals and two assists he amassed in 2015 and the nine goals and five assists he managed in 2016, both from 24 appearances for Fire. In June 2017, he was named in the MLS All-Star team that will play in the friendly against Real Madrid in the off season, a true reward for his stellar performances for Fire this season.

Before leaving for the MLS in January 2016, the 2016-year-old player from Accra played for Helsingborgs in the Swedish league, where he scored 43 goals in 86 league appearances.

If his stats for his club side is anything to go by, Accam should have cemented his place in the national team by now, but that’s far from the case as he has managed only a 1 goal in 14 caps. Accam is by no means a bad forward. In my view, he has suffered from a case of the proverbial square peg in round hole. Accam who started out as a pacy winger, has developed into your typical out and out striker. You won’t get the best from him as a coach if your tactic is to float balls in to the box from the wings for the strikers to get their heads on to it. That was the mistake by Avram Grant, who failed to identify his strongest suit to bring out the best in him. Accam is the sort of player who can work magic with the ball at his feet and with space to run into, and unless the coaches of the national team identify a system that will bring out the best in him, he will be a squad player who joins to make up the number.

When he suits up for the nation next, Accam will be hoping that Coach Kwesi Appiah, who gave him his first call up as a national team player, will play to suit the strength of this player who possesses the qualities of a goal getter for the national team.

WRITER – AYELEY COMMODORE-MENSAH – threesixtGh writer/contributor.


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