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From Ati-Zigi to Kevin Boateng to Albert Adomah... Top 11 players overlooked by Avram Grant who could easily start for Ghana in Gabon

Published on: 07 January 2017
Players who could start at Ghana's AFCON

Avram Grant's final 23-man squad has caused a stir among local fans with a section expression disappointment and little faith in some selected and dropped players.

The decision to drop Austria Liga 1 leading scorer Raphael Dwamena has left many local fans unhappy. According to local coaches who witnessed the team's four-day training sessions in Accra, the 21-year-old rated above other strikers in the department. To make his case player his explosive club form the youngster bagged incredible goals at training, rocking the net of each of the three goalkeepers in camp.

Lorient striker Abdul Majeed Waris reacted badly to his exclusion from the final 23-man squad as he angrily left camp. Waris had hit a rich vein of form in the Ligue 1, scoring four times in his last five league games for Lorient. The striker's scoring form plus that of Dwamena leaves a lot of questions for Avram Grant to answer. The pair have bagged 25 goals in all competitions at their level with Dwamena netting 21 times. The decision to drop Istanbul defensive midfielder Joseph Attamah remains a justifiable decision.

It is obvious that 23-man squad selected by the former Chelsea and West Ham United manager is the best in Ghana's possession. There are players who merit places in Grant's squad and should be in Gabon but the Israeli appears not to have done a good job with his selection.'s El Akyereko runs the rule on the Top 11 Players who should walk into the Ghana team presented for the Gabon tournament.

  • Lawrence Ati-Zigi (Liefering SC - Austria) Goalkeeper

The 2015 FIFA U20 World Cup Ghana goalkeeper trained with Avram Grant's charges in Accra but surprisingly omitted from the squad. With Kwarasey out injured, Ati remains the most active goalkeeper among the stoppers who are based abroad. He kept the post 9 times for Liefering in the Austrian Liga 1. His exceptional qualities lauded by technical brains includes his extraordinary vision and his game starting abilities - a quality that has earned him praises from various circles. He could have easily started in post for the Black Stars at the tournament.

  • Kasim Nuhu (BSC Young Boys - Switzerland) Right-back

Enterprising defender excelling in the Swiss Super League and Europa League with Young Boys Bern. It remains surprising how Avram Grant failed to notice the youngster. Nuhu, 21, has grown from strength to strength in Switzerland since his arrival from Spanish side Mallorca. Versatile enough to fill the right-back slot though he is a typical center-back.

  • Nuru Suley (Alanyaspor - Turkey) Center back

Impressive in the Turkish Super Lig. One of Ghana's top players abroad this season. The former Hearts of Oak man has excelled with Alanyaspor and is in the right shape to claim a starting role in the Black Stars.

  • Inusah Musah (Hearts of Oak - Ghana) Center back

Swept the Ghana Premier League Best Defender of the Year Award. Musah was not considered for a place in the side that trained in Accra and that shocked many. His physique, stature, form and determination rates him better than most of the players in the central defensive department and is a sure starter if he was in Gabon.

  • Nana Akwasi Asare (Gent - Belgium) Left-back

The 30-year-old has played at the top level consistently for well over four season drawing the attention of even the Belgium national team. However he has failed to attract Grant. But he is competent enough to take the place of Baba Rahman at that left-back role.

  • Alfred Duncan (Sassuolo Calcio - Italy) Defensive midfield

Young, energetic and vision. The former Inter Milan boy is playing above his age. He is the finest ball distributor available to Ghana and looks even better when tasked to engineer the midfield.

  • Sulley Muniru (Steaua Bucharest - Romania) Central midfield

Awesome box-to-box midfield plying his trade with Romanian giants Steaua Bucharest. Muniru possesses impressive qualities of his elder brother Sulley Muntari and enjoyed a fine season with the 26-time champions.

  • Kevin-Prince Boateng (Las Palmas - Spain) Offensive midfield

Rejuvenated Boateng! The suspended Ghana international has hit top form for Las Palmas and he fueled the campaign of the Los Amarilos with his staggering form. He has contributed 4 La Liga goals so far and scored an acrobatic finish which was regarded as one of the best goals of 2016.

  • Albert Adomah (Aston Villa - England) Winger

The Aston Villa has been electrifying in the Championship. The winger was influential in securing promotion for Middlesbrough and has translated his fine form to Villa where he is powering them in their promotion campaign. Adomah has played better than Jordan Ayew and forms a brilliant partnership with Ivorian forward Jonathan Kodjia. He is an automatic starter in the current Black Stars set-up but Grant is a blind man.

  • Raphael Dwamena (Austria Lustenau - Austria) Center forward

Ghana have not had a potent left-footed striker since Anthony Yeboah and the Liefering forward appears to be the next in line. With Jordan Ayew misfiring and the Black Stars scoring just two goals in their last five games Dwamena would easily stroll into a starting berth in the Black Stars squad. Netted 21 times in the first-half of the season in the Austrian Liga 1. Was touted as the best striker during the team's training sessions in Accra.

  • Inaki Williams (Athletic Club - Spain) Attacker

Born to a Ghanaian father and a Liberian mother the promising forward is perhaps the best forward available after playing in the Spanish top-flight and notching goals against Barcelona in Cup games. He scored 8 La Liga goals last term and he showed his class in the Copa del Rey triumph over Les Blaugrana in midweek. Top notch player. Would form a solid partnership with Dwamena.

By El Akyereko

Follow the writer on Twitter: @AkyerekOfficial


This article has 15 comment(s), give your comment
  • Stickystraw says:
    January 07, 2017 06:05 pm
    I don't intertain such a rubbish article How do we allow player in low division side of one of the lowest league in world ( Austrian league ) to be in black star's? That's why I am against the selection of samuel tetteh because he too is playing in the same mediocre division side in low league ( Austrian league ) stop over hyping Raphael dwanena because he even Latin blessing is better than him
  • Hayford says:
    January 07, 2017 06:15 pm
    Are those players better than those selected?nonesense
  • Mark says:
    January 07, 2017 06:16 pm
    Mr Writer, is Inaki eligible to play for Ghana?
  • BraKey says:
    January 07, 2017 06:18 pm
    @Stickystraw... U r sticky pussy. which league is samuel Tetteh playing? U talk rubbish
  • Kweku says:
    January 07, 2017 06:18 pm can a player who has not switched his nationality play for Ghana (Inaki)??
  • jj says:
    January 07, 2017 06:24 pm
    Stupid journalist so you don't even know that Inaki must go through Nationality switch before he play for Ghana and what even makes you think he will want to play for Ghana?
  • BraKey says:
    January 07, 2017 06:33 pm
    Ibi you people not dey hear English. The headline say who could start... Meaning potentials
  • lucy says:
    January 07, 2017 08:17 pm
    I really support the idea of including Kasim Adams because he is really making his name in Switzerland.
  • Hornkampf says:
    January 07, 2017 08:20 pm
    @BraKey... You have no idea what you're talking about, don't you? The Austiran Bundesliga is legit one of the worst leagues in the entire world not to mention the austrian 2nd bundesliga where dwamena and tetteh play... it is a disgrace for any renowned football nation to give players from such joke-leagues first team call ups. The level of the ghanian premier leauge is even higher than the austrian FIRST Bundesliga.. trust me... you should watch some games from there, if you want some good comedy entertainment!
  • anokwale says:
    January 07, 2017 11:28 pm
    @hornkampf I beg to differ. The so called Ghana Premier League is nothing to write home about. Their best cannot even qualify for CHAN. Even the Austrian second division is better. I would say that they are equivalent to MLS and those same MLS players defeated Ghana at WC 2014. People should stop over hyping GPL. Thank you.
  • David says:
    January 08, 2017 12:45 am
    i really dont understand some of you guys...i think many of our selected players are misfiring, how csn you possibly drop majeed waris and bring tekpetey who hasnt done enough to merit a place in the black stars....many players in the black stars arent regular starters, jonathan mensah hasnt been in rich form and yet still you drop one of the most consistent centre backs like nuru sulley and sumaila....
  • Kwarteng says:
    January 08, 2017 05:38 am
    FOOLS Alfred Duncan is injured
  • alex says:
    January 08, 2017 06:16 am
    @Brakey, I think is u who don't understand English! if u read very well, the writer says Nana Akwasi Asare , should be replaced Baba Rahman, how on earth a player like Baba , who has been playing for top clubs in Europe and a regular stater in his current team, also have more than imaginable playing minutes in blackstar should be sidelined and include novice like Akwasi Asare, where was he when they were playing for qualifiers?... man we are serious here there is no time for experiment. ..........if u think , blackstar trophy less is nothing to worry about , I kofi owusu Alex, I hv serious problems about it. They keep on teasing us all the time for our trophy less .......?.MXM
  • Patrick Abeku says:
    January 08, 2017 06:11 pm
    You are accusing Grant, but you have ended up recommending eleven players. You are a confused writer! Don't forget that is why he the coach and you call yourself a journalist. Next time when you are writing an article like this remember that your readers are intelligent. You did not give any critical analysis for us to buy into your argument. How on earth can you compare some playing in a lower division with no prior experience at the higher level to experience players?
  • Kofi prince says:
    January 11, 2017 10:55 pm
    To me Jordan must be dropped .he's Not fit for this tournament.