On 25th and 29th March 2022, Ghana will be faced with one last hurdle, possibly the nation’s biggest hurdle in recent memory with a place in Qatar up for grabs.
Nigeria, immensely blessed with quality attackers, will stand in the way of the Black Stars who aim to avoid the disappointment in the previous edition’s qualification. The two nations have argued over several things, ranging from electricity supply to Jollof.
Abedi Pele, Michael Essien, and Stephen Appiah among others have delighted fans in the streets of Kumasi, Accra, and in all 16 regions of Ghana whilst the silky skills of Jay-Jay Okocha, the killer instinct of Nwankwo Kanu, and the calm presence of Mikel Obi are still remembered in Nigerian folklore.
For Ghana, qualification to the historic tournament brings bragging rights. However, there is more at stake for Otto Addo’s side than just securing a ticket to the Middle East.
The 2022 World Cup budget
The upcoming World Cup budget for the 32 teams is worth around $700 million according to sportscriber.com. In the 2018 edition, $576 million was spread across 32 teams.
It represents a 22% increase from the 2018 tournament. Four years ago, the player insurance fee amount set by FIFA for World Cup participants was around $100 million whilst parent clubs received $70 million for allowing players to play.
For this year, insurance benefits will potentially increase to $134 million as per vbetnews.com and parent clubs will earn about $209 million.
This means $34 million more has been set aside on the player insurance front with a $139 million boost in parent club earnings.
Increases in player insurance and club earnings could be attributed to the scheduling of this edition which falls within November and December, the midway point of club football.
FIFA certainly aims to make this World Cup a memorable one on all fronts.
How much Ghana can earn
The eventual winner of the worldwide showcase is set to pocket an astonishing $50 million this year, the highest amount yet.
After beating Croatia 3-1 in the 2018 World Cup final in Russia, France took home $38 million whilst Croatia earned $10 million less.
The runners-up will earn $40 million, and the bronze winner will pocket $10 million less with the eventual fourth-placed team earning $25 million.
Quarterfinalists will earn $18 million each and teams who will only reach the round of 16 will take home $12 million.
All teams who fail to make it to the knockout stages (16) will earn $10 million each. Also, $2 million has been set aside for each team to use as preparation for the competition.
This means Ghana will at least earn $12 million (preparation fee plus group stage earnings) if they manage to beat the Super Eagles and book a place in Qatar.
Otto Addo’s side, if they manage to pull off the impossible and go all the way, could take home an accumulated amount of $62 million as all 32 teams start with $12 million (preparation fee and group stage earnings).
Other negative effects of Ghana missing out
The money tends to be supremely important for the footballing nation that seeks to develop and improve other facets of Ghana football like the Ghana Premier League, Division One League, female leagues coupled with female national teams, and the youth national sides.
Also, the World Cup serves as the perfect platform for players to show their talents and angle for better moves for development. Without a place in Qatar, most Ghanaian players will be limited in that aspect, slowing down the eventual development of the team.
With some abroad-based players like Callum Hudson-Odoi in the sights of the Ghana Football Association, a place in the 2022 edition will serve as a strong case for the Chelsea man and others to join.
Ghana will have a tough task beating the Super Eagles over two legs who have a higher perceived quality. However, the assignment is an achievable one with the right factors in place. Fans can only hope and wait in suspense until the final whistle is eventually blown in Abuja.
By: Bill Eshun|3Sports|Ghana