Vice President of Ghana Football Association, George Afriyie has defended the management member of the Black Stars Winfred Kweku Osei Palmer’s claims about the $150. 000 money paid to the GFA insisting the FA always incur debt on friendly matches.
The Black Stars played the Russian national team in an international friendly on Tuesday September 6 in Moscow after sharing spoils with Rwanda in the last AFCON qualifiers in Accra.
Many sports pundits and the ordinary citizen have questioned why the FA are willing pay any debt after playing Russia but was not able to finance some Black Stars players when the ministry of youth and sports said they don’t have enough money to cater for the player’s flight.
Osei Kweku Palmer confirmed to Asempa Sports in an interview that the Russian federation paid the Ghana Football Association an amount of $150.000 with an appearance fee of $5000.
After the match was played on Tuesday, it was reported in the local media that the FA had received an extra amount of $177.000 amounting to $327.000 but the vice president of the FA says the only money that both parties agreed was $150.000.
Speaking to Asempa Sports, George said, “I have heard of a lot of the agitations going but I will set the records straight regarding to the Russian friendly match.
“Before the match against Russia, we had already received an offer from the USA national team asking us to play them on October 11 but we were waiting for a confirmation from FIFA but we had a report from FIFA saying the match have been cancelled due to our fixtures as the FIFA rules clearly says when you have a tournament coming up so we decided not to play Russia as well.
“Russian FA wrote back to us indicating that they can sanction the match for it to be played in Moscow. When we had the confirmation from FIFA and the Russian FA, our international relations officer, Mr. Alex Asante informed the minister and a copy of the confirmation letter was sent to the ministry through Alex Asante. The truth is, the contract was signed on officially on Monday September 5 and we also send a copy of the contract to the ministry on that same Monday.
“People are asking how much did the Russian paid us. My question is, have the FA ever brought a contract to the public domain? If we have been issuing out contract to the public, then you can question us but that has not been the norm.
The issue of paying the players and the technical team $5000 as an appearance fees and incurring debt after friendly matches have been a question the public are demanding answers.
Quizzed on why the players and the technical team have to received $5000 as an appearance in the Russian friendly match and incurring debt after friendly matches, George said, “We have been paying this $5000 as an appearance fees since 2006 and what my colleague Kweku Osei Palmer said is the truth. We incur debt because we spend on the team going to into friendly but there is no doubt that the Russians paid for our flight but the truth is we incur debt any time we play friendly matches as Kweku Osei Palmer said.
“The GFA was given $150.000 plus accommodation and ticketing but I don’t anything about the extra amount of $177.000 but the $5000 dollars as an appearance fees in friendly matches have been consistent. It possible not to incur debt in friendly matches but it depends on the country you will be playing with because you will be indebt if you decide to play Argentina here in Ghana.
“So what I am saying is, it is not a good practice to ask the FA to bring the documents out but personally if you ask me to bring it out, I will not have any problem with you but that has not been the norm and even up till now, the Russians have not send the money but they have promised us to pay it in two trenches.” He added.