Elsewhere, last season’s runners-up Atletico Madrid will have to overturn a 1-0 deficit when they host German side Bayer Leverkusen in their second leg. Arsenal have given themselves a lot of work to do if they’re to reach the quarter-finals of the Champions League for the first time in five seasons.They trail 3-1 after the first leg of their last-16 tie at home to Monaco last night.Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain got an injury-time goal to give Arsene Wenger’s side some hope.
Public Relations Officer of Asante Kotoko, Kennedy Boakye Ansah, admits that the club is feeling the financial strain of the absence of regular football activity in Ghana due to the Coronavirus pandemic.The Ghana Premier League has been on a break since March 15 when the President, Nana Akufo Addo, announced a ban on all public gatherings in the wake of the spread of the pandemic.Since most football clubs in Ghana rake in income from gate proceeds and transfers, the absence of football means clubs are struggling to survive and Boakye Ansah says Kotoko is no different.However, he remains hopeful that the situation will be resolved in coming months.“Kotoko, like any other Ghanaian club, has been feeling the strain for some time especially when our major source of revenue is from the gates.We are a bit lucky to have some sponsorship but even that can only take care of about 30 to 40 percent of our monthly expenditure. So we have to find other means of mobilising funds to run the club.We have had some great support from the Executive Chairman, Dr. Kwame Kyei. In these times, it is not easy for all the clubs but we will survive.The situation is under control but the only thing we want is to overcome the current pandemic so our football comes back.”The strain Kotoko is feeling in terms of finance has also been heightened by the fact that their main sponsors, MTN, has suspended its monthly financial obligations to the club.Under the terms of a sponsorship agreement between the entities, MTN is supposed to give the club an amount of GHS 70,000 but due to the Coronavirus pandemic, businesses have also been put under some stress and MTN has asked for a freeze of their duties to Kotoko.
Former Ghana captain Stephen Appiah says he is ready to accept an official role with the Black Stars team at 2014 World Cup.Some sections of the Ghanaian public have been craving for the inclusion of the former Juventus star in the official Ghana delegation at next year’s tournament in Brazil.Appiah remains famous for his inspirational role in leading Ghana to its first ever World Cup in 2006.He again played an integral leadership role in the Black Stars team at the 2010 World Cup – though most of his works was done behind the scenes as John Mensah led the team on the field of play.And with over six month’s towards another Ghana campaign at the World Cup, the ex Ghana international says he will welcome any role offered him by the Ghana FA in order to also contribute his quota in another success story in Brazil.“I will love to do that if indeed the Ghana Football Association approach me for the role, am still a footballer and when you get a role like this in a major World Cup like the upcoming once it will just be awesome or me,” Appiah said. “I know almost all of the players who played in the qualifiers, I played with Gyan, Sulley and most of the players.“Playing in a World Cup is different from playing for your club in a league game or even the African Cup of Nations.“You need somebody who has been there before to advice and straighten the younger ones and if I’m given the opportunity why will I turn it down? I will defiantly help my team.”