New players not coming because of World Cup – Chris Hughton

Chris Hughton has dismissed the notion that players who recently committed to playing for Ghana did so because of the World Cup.

The Ghana Football Association announced in June that six players, five of whom were born abroad, had decided to play for the Black Stars.

Mohammed Salisu and Tariq Lamptey from the Premier League, as well as Inaki Williams, Ransford-Yeboah Königsdörffer, Stephan Ambrosius, and Patric Pfeiffer, all declared their availability for Black Stars duty.

While some Ghanaians welcomed the news, others criticized it, labelling the players as opportunists. They believe the World Cup motivated the players to choose Ghana.

However, the Black Stars technical advisor has defended the players.

Hughton in an interview with TV3 said; “The nation wants us to have the best squad. They want us to have the best opportunity to do well in the world cup and to do well in the world cup, we need the best squad.”

“Anybody that has now shown an allegiance to represent the Black Stars, it’s not just about tomorrow, it’s about next year, the year after and the year after going into the future. Anybody that is committing is not just committing to the world cup, they are committing to the future.”

Hughton is looking forward to working with Salisu, Lamptey, Williams, Ransford-Yeboah, and Ambrosius following their inclusion in the squad for the pre-World Cup friendlies against Brazil and Nicaragua this month.

He said, “One thing I can tell you in my short period of time here is that the new recruits that we have, have showed great enthusiasm so far.”

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“There hasn’t been a game yet [for them] to be involved in. But the talks that initially the association had with them, they showed great enthusiasm.

“I’m absolutely positive that for the new recruits coming into the squad, we would have no difficulty getting the right balances,” Hughton added.

Ghana’s World Cup campaign will begin against Portugal on November 24, followed by games against South Korea and Uruguay to round out the group stage.