With the exception of Hearts of Oak, Asante Kotoko and Ashanti Gold SC who seem to have some amount of corporate backings in their day-to-day management, the rest of the 14 teams who play in the Ghana Premier League dip into their own pockets to run the affairs of the club. The Ghana Football Association subvention to the clubs are most times not forthcoming due to lack of title sponsor.
This persistent development has widened the gaps between the traditional clubs and supposed smaller clubs, leaving them impoverished. Hearts of Oak and Asante Kotoko including Ashgold who can attract sponsors are all battling with financial challenges. Clubs feel distant from the corporate world. Players’ wages are not paid on time, clubs structures are deteriorating because of the absence of support.
These challenges Aduana midfielder Elvis Opoku believes are the reasons home-grown talents are in the rush to leave the country and play in lesser known leagues in Africa.
“The difference between the bigger clubs and the smaller clubs is money. They [bigger clubs] have companies sponsoring them and helping them buy big name players but in the case of the smaller clubs, everything depends on the owner and as one keeps spending, the money will definitely finish”.
“Ghanaian players are willing play in the Tanzanian league for example because they pay their players well compared to Ghana. They’ve companies who helped hence their structures are excellent”.
The statement is clear, inasmuch as they want to play and make names for themselves, the players have their economic rights to protect and they are willing to give in to any offer provided it worth more than what they earn in Ghana. Times players play out of love are over and I’m sure those who played for love will look back today with some regret because they could have gone out and play for money.
Just like Elvis said, it’s about sponsorship however the stakeholders in league have failed to live up to the basic things that could have stop player exodus. We have pampered mediocrity to extent where sponsors have run away. Sponsors will come and go like Globalcom and First Capital Plus Bank. No serious-minded business organization will invest in a venture where there’s no value for money. Clubs are interested in three points more than setting good strictures that will earn those sponsors.
Everyone wants the best of life so as the local players, Elvis Opoku has spoken the minds of those players who have left and those who are willing to leave. It’s left to the football people to listen to his advice.