Many Ghanaians, active and retired eminent football stars, coaches, administrators, government officials and supporters of the two traditional clubs of Accra, Hearts of Oak and Great Olympics gathered at the forecourt of the State House today to pay their last respects to the late Sir Cecil Jones Attuquayefio on Friday.
Attuquayefio whose mortal remains was lied in state at the forecourt of the State House this morning before interment later in the day at the Awudome Cemetery, passed on after losing his long battle with throat cancer on May 10.
The late Attuquayefio, one of the nation’s most prominent football icons was 70.
The former national team coach fondly remembered for his extraordinary exploits as a footballer, a manager and an administrator once served as the vice-president of the Ghana Football Association (GFA).
A member of the victorious 1965 Black Stars Africa Cup of Nations winning team, he played for Accra Great Olympics where he was key to the club’s winning of the 1972 and 1974 league titles.
Among the dignitaries at the State House, today was former President Jerry John Rawlings and several government and high profile officially.
As a coach he handled Olympics, Okwawu United, Goldfields (AshantiGold), Stade Club of Abidjan, Accra Hearts of Oak, Liberty Professionals and the national team of the Republic of Benin which he made history with by qualifying for a maiden Africa Cup of Nations tournament in Tunisia in 2004.
Attuquayefio also coached the Black Starlets, Black Satellites, Black Meteors and Black Stars where he led the likes of Stephen Appiah, Michael Essien, Asamoah Gyan and among others.
In 2000, he dazzled the continent and was honoured by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) as African Coach of the Year after he guided Hearts to win the 2000 CAF Champions League.
He followed it by winning the 2001 African Super Cup and the 2004 CAF Confederation Cup titles, in addition to four Premier League titles and two FA Cups. GNA