By: Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.
The 2014 World Cup Tournament has been especially intriguing, if also because it has instructively revealed the fact that it takes far more than a nation’s track-record in the game to make any remarkable headway towards the most coveted trophy in this most global of sporting activities. The epic humiliation of Brazil, five-time winner of the World Cup, by Germany, with a 7 to 1 regular playtime score, ought to give a meaningful sit-up grist to the executive operatives of the Ghana Football Association (GFA).
I am not particularly sorry for the Brazilians, because it well appears that they went into the game exuberantly pumped up by the indisputable fact of their unprecedented championship record. The pomp and pageantry with which their supporters received and cheered the home team, significantly attested to an irrepressible streak of hubris which only a well-organized and determined team like Germany could eloquently quench with the requisite sobriety.
But that the Ghana Black Stars drew a 2-2 scoreline with the Germans, may well signify the great chances of Ghana reaching the top-most level of this most globalized of all sporting activities, given time and the necessary emotional control and psycho-cultural discipline which we all witnessed the Germans so laudably exhibit with impeccable poise. In principle, however, I was not the least bit all that elated for the Germans; for their still troubling history of Aryan Supremacy continues to palpably haunt and traumatize a significant portion of the international community.
Paradoxically, however, as the Akan people of Ghana are wont to say: “You may not like the duiker/antelope, but you ought to be candid enough to commend its graceful gait.” Bleak and grim Nazi past and all, it is eloquently beyond question that it was their strategic nimbleness and cooperative diligence that forced the propitious hand of victory in favor of Mrs. Merkel’s country and people.
Indeed, I have often said that one can fairly reasonably gauge the level of any country’s progressive cohesiveness, as well as its intellectual and cultural development by looking at the caliber of its performance at the World Cup. Such observation may or may not be valid, but it is not wholly without a modicum of plausibility.
The rather quaint and all-too-predictable revelation by Mr. Randy Abbey that the key operatives of the GFA have always carried huge sums of hard currency – mainly U.S. dollars – outside the country to pay the players of the Black Stars, cannot augur well for the good fortune of Ghana at the World Cup. For such culture or protocol is rather too primitive and downright ridiculous. It is almost as if the entirety of our national leadership has absolutely no productive sense of global banking and monetary regulations.
The good news here is that while, indeed, the thoroughgoing humiliation of the Brazilians at the hands of the Germans may likely not be forgotten anytime soon, at least the Brazilians can console themselves knowing that the Ghanaians have quite decently and voluntarily contributed our proverbial widow’s mite towards the material alleviation of some of their current psychical anguish.
Then again, who knows? Perhaps the cold-calculated uncharitability of the Brazilian immigration officials towards their remarkably less savvy Ghanaian guests, may well have contributed to their epic debacle at the World Cup.