Former President of the Ghana Football Association (GFA), Kwesi Nyantakyi, says the negligence of an official of the association contributed to Laryea Kingston’s exclusion from the 2006 Black Stars World Cup squad.
“Ghana appealed [Laryea Kingston’s suspension], but the truth of the matter is that the appeal was filed out of time,” Nyantakyi says in a yet-to-be-televised interview with Muftawu Nabila Abdulai on Prime Take.
Laryea was instrumental in the Black Stars’ debut World Cup qualification but missed the tournament after receiving a red card for unsportsmanlike behaviour during a 2006 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) second-group game against Senegal.
He was suspended for three games but served one against Zimbabwe.
There were two games more which meant that he was not available for the opening World Cup group games against Italy and the Czech Republic following the Black Stars’ group stage exit in the AFCON.
But many thought that the technical team led by Ratomir Djokovic could have taken him to the tournament if the FA had appealed the ban.
“Unfortunately, Laryea Kingston was suspended due to the red card in Egypt during the African Cup of Nations (AFCON).
“We did, but it was filed out of time. Yes, it was filed out of time,” he said three times.
It is quite unusual to file appeals out of time.
“Somebody’s negligence at the time,” he explained. “I remember Alex Asante [Deputy General Secretary of the GFA] brought me the sanction [letter] in my room in the hotel at Port Said.
“I was seated with OB Amoah [then Deputy Sports Minister], so I asked him to hand it to another official (name withheld) to handle.
“We moved on to concentrate on other things hoping that this thing would be done, and it was not done. By the time we all came back to look at it, it had not been done.
“Unfortunately, that’s how Laryea Kingston didn’t make it to the 2006 World Cup,” he stated.
“It was a very painful experience for us,” the former 1st Vice President of CAF described.
“The time for filing an appeal had elapsed and when the time for filing an appeal elapses there’s no other way you can even be heard unless you go for an extension of time within which to file the appeal but in football, we don’t do an extension of time to file an appeal.”
“Nevertheless,” he says “we went to the World Cup, lost the first game to Italy but won the two subsequent games [against the Czech Republic and the USA] to qualify to the second round.
“Unfortunately, we met almighty Brazil and they whipped us 3-0, but having been to the World Cup for the first time, we thought that the team did well,” he opined.