Like most Ghanaians, former President, John Dramani Mahama can’t get over the Black Stars’ heartbreaking loss to Uruguay at the 2010 World Cup.
The Ghanaian national team were on the verge of becoming the first African country to reach the semi-finals of the World Cup before Luis Suarez battered Dominic Adiyiah’s goalbound header off the line with his hands, in the final seconds of extra time.
Suarez was sent off but Asamoah Gyan missed the spot-kick. The match went to a shootout, which Uruguay won.
That memory continues to haunt the players, fans and clearly the former President, who brought it up when the Ghana Football Association (GFA) boss, Kurt Okraku, visited him recently.
Mr. Mahama noted that the Black Stars – who will face Portugal South Korea and Uruguay at Qatar 2022 – are in a tough group at this year’s World Cup.
He, however, urged the GFA President to ensure that the team, at least, avenges the loss in 2010 against Uruguay.
“Unfortunately, we are in a Group of death. The teams in our Group are the strongest and look at what fate has made, bringing Uruguay into our Group again,” Mr. Mahama said.
“It will be sweet revenge if we score them and so even if you don’t beat anybody, just beat Uruguay for me and let’s pay Suarez back for what he did to us.”
He admitted that he was getting on in years and could not be as emotional as he used to be about the team.
He, however, stated that he was impressed with the current side, particularly how they played in the second half in a recent friendly against Brazil.
“Sometimes I get heartache but now that I am a senior citizen, I have to take it slow,” he said.
“Our team had a good second half against Brazil and normally with our team, it is with settling in and settling down. When we go to a tournament, it takes time for us to settle and play our real soccer.”