With the 2022 FIFA World Cup in sight, many Ghanaians are waiting on Head Coach, Otto Addo and the Ghana Football Association (GFA) to release the final list of 26 players for the tournament in Qatar.
There has been speculation in the media over who has made the final cut and who has not, from the 55 players listed in the provisional squad.
This article is by no means the official mouthpiece of the GFA but an assessment of the information gathered from sources close to the FA.
So which players did not make the final cut, according to reports?
JOSEPH PAINTSIL – DROPPED
The forward, who plays for KRC Genk has been in the form of his life this season, contributing six goals and seven assists in all competitions.
Despite not scoring in his six games so far for the Black Stars, many expected Joseph Paintsil to make the cut, but no, he does not, according to reports.
Prior to this apparent exclusion from the Black Stars, his last appearance for the Black Stars came in June.
He was absent from the Kirin Cup and was dropped for Ghana’s friendly games against Brazil and Nicaragua.
Otto Addo, in the pre-match press conference ahead of the Brazil clash, hinted that Paintsil’s decision to miss out on the Black Stars’ trip to Japan back in July may have contributed to his omission from the Brazil tie.
“He was very close to making the squad, but we have to make some tough decisions. The decisions are now even tougher now with the new players joining in.
”Joseph is doing well but I feel it would’ve been good for him to play the Japan and Chile matches to show more of him but he had some problems and decided to leave the team, which I understand.
”But for me, I can only judge what I see, and at the moment I see others ahead of him,” he said.
From this, it is apparent his absence from the Kirin Cup might have cost him a place in the World Cup too.
JEFFREY SCHLUPP – DROPPED
Jeffrey Schlupp, 29, missed out on a place in the final squad for Ghana’s World Cup campaign in 2014 and lightning appears to have struck again ahead of Qatar 2022.
He is perhaps Ghana’s most in-form left-sided midfielder, having played 13 games in the English Premier League this season for Crystal Palace.
However, Schlupp has not been in the Black Stars since September 2021 when he played 28 minutes against Ethiopia and was substituted after picking an injury in the World Cup qualifier.
He had not received a single call-up since the appointment of Otto Addo and his exclusion does not come as a surprise to me since Addo has not seen enough of him under his leadership.
Aside the aforementioned players, the likes of Mubarak Wakaso, Abdul Mumin, Majeed Ashimeru, Ibrahim Danlad, Andy Yiadom, Lawrence Ati-Zigi, Mudasiru Salifu, Antoine Semenyo, Felix Afena-Gyan have been put on the standby list, according to well-placed sources.
The official list is expected to be released by the Ghana Football Association before the end of the week.