In the early morning hours of July 27, Kurt Edwin Simeon-Okraku, president of the Ghana Football Association (GFA), was present to tell the Black Princesses farewell as they departed for France.
Before leaving for Costa Rica and competing in a record-breaking sixth straight FIFA Women’s U-20 World Cup, the Princesses will continue their preparations in France.
“It’s been many weeks of hard work, waiting and you all dreaming about the vision to play at the highest level of football in your category. Now the waiting is over, it is now time to be very focused on the last leg,” Kurt Okraku said.
“As you leave Ghana for France to continue the long journey to Costa Rica. I am sure it is a journey each one of you has been waiting for.
“From your clubs, you were picked to represent your country and now is the moment. We have been on this journey before as a country but always exit at the group stage. But I believe we have a group of talented players who can go beyond the group stage’’
“I have always said that, when we stay and play as a unit, stay together and for each other, we are always strong. And I believe that in this tournament, beginning from the friendly against France, you will stay as a unit and encourage each other when it is tough because it will be tough.
“But when it is tough, that is the right moment that you need each other. Communicate a lot more and for those of you with international exposure, take the lead and encourage your colleagues at all times.
“Encourage each other and know that it is possible because I believe we will make history. If you do your best as an individual, that will have a positive effect on the team.
“Play well in all your games as you never know who will be watching anytime you step foot on the pitch.
“The Ministry of Youth and Sports has been very supportive of your journey which means the Government of Ghana is behind you. The Government will support you till you get to Costa Rica and hopefully win the trophy.
We wish you the best of luck on behalf of the Executive Council and all football enthusiasts worldwide.
“Have a safe journey to France and to Costa Rica, where the battle lines will be drawn and I am positive that you will do your best and show that we are Ghana. God bless our homeland Ghana, and make our nation great and strong,” he added.
He used the occasion to congratulate Evelyn Badu, the team captain, for successfully representing Ghana and winning the Women Inter Club Player and Women Young Player of the Year trophies at the recently held CAF awards. Additionally, he exhorted her to motivate the group to perform well in Costa Rica.
In addition, he congratulated Doris Boaduwaa on her nomination for Women’s Young Player of the Year at the CAF Awards.
To prepare for the U-20 Women’s World Cup in Costa Rica, the Black Princesses will play France on July 29.