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2014 World Cup: Christian Atsu assures Black Stars won't boycott Portugal clash despite pay row

Published on: 25 June 2014
Christian Atsu

Ghana winger Christian Atsu insists there is no way his teammates will boycott Thursday’s final Group G match against Portugal if their appearance fees are unpaid.

The Black Stars players agitated on Tuesday at the team camp base in Maceio and nearly boycotted their trip to Brasilia.

But the Ghana government intervened there were reports a plane flew from Accra to Brasília with $3m (£1.76m) on board.

President John Mahama spoke to the players and they decided to travel to the Brazilian capital.

Speaking at Wednesday’s pre-match conference, Atsu says they will still take to the field even if the money delays.

“We are in the biggest tournament in the world now, if we don’t get the money, we’ll just put everything behind us because the whole world is watching us. We are not going to say: ‘Because of the money we’re not going to play’,” the Chelsea player said he said.

“We had these issues but now we had a meeting and our captain [Asamoah Gyan] spoke with us. We respect him every much.

“Now we’re all focused on the game, a game that is very important for all Ghanaians, also for us, the players. It will be bad if we lose the game, because I think people will think it’s because of the money. So we have no option but to do our country proud.”

Asked where the players proposed to keep the cash, Atsu smiled and replied: “That’s a difficult question for me. Of course we will keep it in our bags. We just lock them. We will transfer all the money into our account.”


This article has 12 comment(s), give your comment
  • woodini says:
    June 25, 2014 10:00 pm
    Money palaver???? You guys are earning millions of dollars at your various clubs yet you guys are still hungry. I begin to believe people that you guys have sold the US match because of money first before your country. So where is the commitment now to beat Portugal??? Disgrace indeed. You guys should bow down your heads in shame.
  • SHANGO says:
    June 25, 2014 10:04 pm
    Portugal 3 Ghana 0
  • Benito says:
    June 25, 2014 10:06 pm
    Why will the stars take such a risk? Now the whole world know your cash is being shipped to Brazil,what if hard core criminals strike ????
  • Boro says:
    June 25, 2014 10:15 pm
    So what then was the rational behind the ministers being in Brazil. I thought he was there to make sure some of these problems get sorted out in time or all that the sports minister knows how to do is ' chooo booi, chooo booi' charismatic indeed! Always thinking about themselves and their family whilst mother Ghana suffers.
  • Steezy says:
    June 26, 2014 12:03 am
    Shango, your fada is a transvestite and yo mother is village champion prostitute. Ghana will beat the tired portugal and germany wil beat usa. Simple. kwasia bobo
  • Bostonman redsox says:
    June 26, 2014 12:20 am
    Useless government. We have like 100 delegates accompany 23 players but can't get shit rite. B'S just win for us guys
  • SHANGO says:
    June 26, 2014 12:54 am
    God is fighting for Portugal and Kweku Bonsam is fighting for Ghana.Portugal 3 Ghana 0.
  • Steezy says:
    June 26, 2014 01:12 am
    Shango and your mother is fighting of men from sleeping with your gay fada. Nonsense
  • mococo says:
    June 26, 2014 02:22 am
    Come to think of it, I remember these same players begging for a chance to play for the black stars in the past. It is a shame how our Ghana can be defaced by these same unappreciative lot. If none of the national teams had not sponsored some of these unpatriotic lot, where would they have been. And there are some of these guys who do not belong on this team. I think our so called prince boateng is becoming a nuisance these days. Just see how Muntari, Rabiu and dede, mensah,boye, asamoah, afful are killing themselves for this country. I think we need a coach who will make the black star shirt so expensive to wear to the extent that no player like prince boateng ever comes in our line again.
  • Soccer Brian says:
    June 26, 2014 03:16 am
    I agree with you mococo we have to make blac star very very expensive and difficult to get in and to stay in by so doing all these nonsense will stop then we can produce better result
  • Union Leader says:
    June 26, 2014 05:38 am
    @Wodini and Mococo,stop displaying your ignorance. What these players are agitating for is called appearance fees. Each player on the roster is entitled to an appearance fee. In other words, once you make the squad ,you're entitled to it. And come to think of it, this money is paid by FIFA to all participating countries. It does not come from the Govt of Gh. FIFA pays this to the local football federation and they in turn will disburse the money to the 23 players on the roster. It's big money,that's why there's always jostling and hustling among these players to make the roster. It's completely different from winning bonus. Winning bonus is paid by the Govt from its own coffers to motivate the players to give off their best. But in Gh the ministry of sports demands that the GFA transfers the appearance fees paid by FIFA to the ministry's account for no reason. Sometimes they underestimate the intelligence of some of these players, they forget that most of these players are top professionals who knows every aspect of the game. So it's within their rights to agitate for what essentially belongs to them before they're kicked out of the tournament (Christ forbid ). 'Cos they know once they're kicked out , that will be the end of that money. They must as well get it now before it's late. The corrupt Ministry of Sports have no business to demand that the GFA transfer that money to their account for them to pay the players. It's never done anywhere, except Ghana.
  • awass says:
    June 26, 2014 06:41 am
    Who d **** says they dont deserve d money.Is d appearance fee meant 4 mahama or elvis.itz even long overdue