Saturday, September 23, 2023

Asamoah Gyan: Uruguay penalty miss will haunt me for the rest of my life

Former Sunderland and Ghana forward Asamoah Gyan has not forgotten about the penalty miss in the 2010 World Cup quarter-finals against Uruguay, and says it will haunt him for the rest of his life.

The Black Stars made it to their first-ever quarter-final in just their second appearance at the World Cup.

They were poised to become the first African country to progress to the semi-finals when Ghana were given a penalty towards the end of extra-time. This was after Luiz Suarez was given a red card for using his hand on the line to stop the ball from going in.


Suarez was given a straight red card and Gyan missed the resulting penalty, and it has been a bitter pill to swallow ever since.

“Today, any time alone, it still haunts me,” the 34-year old told TV3 Ghana. “Sometimes I feel like the world should go back again so I can redeem myself, but I know this is something that will haunt me for the rest of my life.


“I accept that because there is nothing I can do about it. I went there to save my country, but I ended up being the villain, which I accept because I know how people feel.

“It was a disaster. It was crazy. I was also calm because I couldn’t sleep the whole night because I was crying the whole night until morning so I was somehow calm because I couldn’t cry anymore. All I was telling myself was to get another chance because I knew I could redeem myself even if not football, something else. But even if I don’t, my kids will do it one day.”

Gyan is Ghana’s leading marksman of all time with 51 goals from 109 caps.

He had initially called time on his career just before the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations but reversed his decision after talks with Ghana President Nana Akufo-Addo. He featured twice in the tournament as a substitute before the Black Stars crashed out in the round of 16 to Tunisia via penalties.

Gyan has not been called up since then but has not given up, citing his desire to win gold with the national team, something that has never happened in his 17 years-and-counting international career.

“It looks like people want to retire me, but I’m not done yet,” he said. “I had a couple of injuries, but I’m getting back to full fitness. I’m now okay and feel good in my body. I have added a bit of weight that I have to work on and get back to shape.

“Not winning a trophy with the Black Stars bothers me. Since 2003, I’ve gotten a bronze medal and silver; I want the gold, which I don’t have. So that is what bothers me until now and that is what I want to achieve.

“For me, what will make somebody quit football is dedication, but it is still there so I feel I have a lot to prove and do on the field; when I see certain things, I feel like I can still do it. A lot of people have tried, but I always say to myself I will call it a day on my own terms: nobody can retire me.”

Signature TV
Signature TV
Signature TV is a multi-media company, owners and operators of and producers of The Signature Show on AIT and Corruption Tori. Our programmes are broadcast on the AIT Network and on Seven NTA stations across the country. We are content providers for a number of television networks and some State TV stations, with a respected 24/7, high online and offline followership. We are also Communications/Media Consultants to MacArthur Foundation, Ford Foundation and OSIWA.

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