Sulley Muntari: How ex-Ghana FA boss Nyantakyi 'knelt and begged' for midfielder’s selection in 2010 World Cup
- Muntari had been expelled from squad over ill-discipline
- EX-GFA boss had to plead with coach for his inclusion
- Midfielder had disciplinary issues in 2014 World Cup
WHAT HAPPENED? Muntari had fallen out with then Black Stars coach Milovan Rajevac over disciplinary reasons and was set to be excluded from the team that represented Ghana at the global tournament in South Africa.
However, having enjoyed a brilliant campaign with Inter Milan that saw him win a treble of Serie A, Champions League and Coppa Italia under Jose Mourinho, Nyantakyi had to plead with the Serbian tactician to include the midfielder.
WHAT DID HE SAY? “Yes, in 2010 I did it. I did it twice, not even once. I had to kneel for Sulley Muntari to be named in Black Stars for the World Cup,” Nyantakyi Ghana’s Joy Sports as reported by Ghana Soccernet.
THE BIGGER PICTURE: After not being included in the starting line-up for the team's first two matches, Muntari was reportedly expelled from the squad for insulting Rajevac and his teammates before he was reinstated following Nyantakyi’s intervention.
This was clearly a case of interference into the national team selection by the federation head, an issue that many FA presidents in Africa have been accused of.
Muntari went on to make two substitute appearances against Germany and the United States before starting the quarter-final against Uruguay in place of the suspended Andre Ayew and scored a long-range effort on the stroke of half-time to give Ghana a 1-0 lead at the break.
DID YOU KNOW? Muntari and Kevin-Prince Boateng were sent home from the Black Stars camp in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil only hours before their final group match against Portugal for assaulting a member of former Black Stars coach Kwesi Appiah's coaching staff.
WHAT NEXT FOR MUNTARI? The 38-year-old, who has 84 caps and 20 goals for Ghana, expressed a desire to return to the Black Stars squad in June but that looks impossible at the moment as he has been out of action and is yet to find a club since leaving Accra Hearts of Oak in the same month.