Ghana soccer association fires all coaches

FILE - In this Sunday, June 8, 2014 file photo, Kwesi Appiah, coach of Ghana's national soccer team, talks to the media in Miami Gardens, Fla. The Ghana soccer association has fired all its national team coaches it was announced Friday, Jan. 3, 2019 in a drastic and unexpected move. That includes the coaches for the men's and women's senior national teams and all men's and women's youth teams.The move means Kwesi Appiah has been fired as coach of the men's senior team for the second time. (AP Photo/J Pat Carter, file)

ACCRA, Ghana — The Ghana soccer association has fired all its national team coaches in a drastic and unexpected move.

That includes the coaches for the men's and women's senior national teams and all men's and women's youth teams. In all, nine coaches were removed.

The Ghana Football Association said it “dissolved the technical teams of all national teams with immediate effect” and “extends its appreciation to all coaches and members of the respective national teams for their contributions.”

The GFA gave no reason for the decision.

The move means Kwesi Appiah has been fired as coach of the men's senior team for the second time. Appiah appears to have paid for Ghana's disappointing African Cup of Nations campaign last year in Egypt, when the Black Stars lost to Tunisia on penalties in the last 16.

The decision to start again with the coaching staffs of all national teams came soon after the GFA announced the appointment of a new general secretary.

Appiah was coach of Ghana from 2012-14. He lost his job to former Chelsea manager Avram Grant but was re-hired in 2017.

Ghana is a four-time African champion but won its last continental championship in 1982. It has lost three African Cup finals since then, two of them in penalty shootouts. The team was in the spotlight at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa when it became only the third African team to reach the quarterfinals. It only just missed out on the semifinals by losing to Uruguay, again on penalties.

But there's been trouble at the GFA in recent years. It was disbanded by the country's president in 2018 following allegations of widespread corruption in the game in the West African country. Amid the scandal, the president of the GFA was banned for life by FIFA for accepting bribes. Kwesi Nyantakyi, who was also a FIFA Council member at the time and the vice president of the African soccer confederation, was caught in a documentary accepting $65,000 in cash from undercover reporters posing as businessmen.

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