SHOCKING: Okrah & Afriyie Barnieh were used as defenders at Black Stars training; Why Otto Addo dropped GPL stars


The duo were very hopeful of getting the chance to impress the technical team but Otto Addo was never ready for them

Bechem United forward Augustine Okrah and Hearts of Oak striker Daniel Afriyie Barnieh could not get the chance to impress Ghana coach Otto Addo during their stints with the Black Stars, can confirm.

The duo were given call ups to join the Black Stars ahead of 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers against Madagascar and Central Africa Republic as well as a four-nation tournament in Japan after a wonderful season in Ghana Premier League.

However, upon arriving at the national team’s camp, there were several indications that greeted them and suggested that their presence weren’t needed by technical team. The Ghana Premier League stars upon arriving in camp were given jersey numbers of senior team players who were excused from the game due to injuries.

Although, there were many vacant jerseys, Okrah was given jersey number 5 which is always worn by Arsenal midfielder Thomas Teye Partey while Barnieh used number 23 predominantly worn in recent times by Strasbourg defender Alexander Djiku and with the duo coming back very soon, Okrah and Barnieh were obviously just caretakers.

That wasn’t all, the duo were not made to train with other Black Stars players at their usual positions which could’ve given the coaches a good and close view of their talents. Otto Addo did not have any plans for them and therefore used Okrah and Barnieh as left full-backs or defensive midfielders since he wanted to deploy different tactics with the players he had in mind. can confirm that Otto Addo held a meeting with the two players after they were dropped en route to the game against Central Africa Republic and complained about their attitudes in camp.

Firstly, our sources have revealed he complained that Okrah was always quiet in camp and would only talk when he is at the training ground which makes him different from the others. Although, the player argued that is his nature, Addo felt it was not what he was expected from him.

Also, Otto Addo complained extensively about Barnieh. The Black Stars gaffer was not happy with how Barnieh was always seen cracking jokes with some senior players.

Shockingly, both Okrah and Barnieh had the jerseys they trained with while at the Black Stars camp taken away from them and could only go home with a pair of sneakers which was given to them while in camp.

The players had to make their own arrangements to leave the team’s hotel since no arrangements were made for them. Okrah, in particular, had to book a flight back to Kumasi before he continued with a bus to Bechem through the help of Bechem United owner Kingsley Owusu Acheaw ‘Agama’.

Meanwhile, Otto Addo has settled on 25 players for the match against Central African Republic on Sunday with Bristol City striker Antoine Semenyo dropped due to a knock he picked up against Madagascar on Wednesday.

Check the full squad:

Goalkeepers (3):
Joseph Wollacott, Lawrence Ati-Zigi, Manaf Nurudeen

Defenders (7):
Alidu Seidu, Denis Odoi, Gideon Mensah, Baba Abdul Rahman, Abdul Mumin, Daniel Amartey, Jonathan Mensah

Midfielders (6):
Idrissu Baba, Edmund Addo, Elisha Owusu, Mohammed Kudus, Daniel Kofi Kyereh, Mubarak Wakaso

Wingers/Attackers (9): Andre Ayew, Joseph Painstil, Jordan Ayew, Kamaldeen Sulemana, Abdul Fatawu Issahaku, Osman Bukari, Felix Afena-Gyan, Kwasi Okyere Wriedt, Benjamin Tetteh


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