Ghana national team captain Asamoah Gyan on Monday announced his withdrawal from international football just weeks before the Africa Nations Cup.
“Upon consultation with my family and team… if the decision of the coach is to give captaincy of the tournament to another player while I am named in the team for the tournament, I wish to recuse myself from the tournament,” the 33-year-old player said in a statement.
The Black Stars are in Group F with Cameroon, Benin and Guinea-Bissau.
Gyan made his international debut at the age of 17 against Somalia in 2003. He is Ghana’s all-time goal scorer in the national team with 51 goals in his 106 appearances. He has also featured in three World Cups — 2006, 2010 and 2014.
The Kayserispor forward, who made his first appearance in November 2003 against Somalia, has earned 106 caps for his country, scoring 51 goals.
He has opted to retire upon discussion with his family and team.
“I cannot pretend to be happy. I would rather hurt myself emotionally and psychologically, over the years I served with an open heart and have given my all to the best of my ability in my quest for serving our great nation, Ghana. I have represented the proud colours of our country in 10 major tournaments from the Olympics, World Cups and in African Nations Cups with different coaches.
“In all, I would say the last years have been the proudest moments in my career as a captain under the managerial leadership of coach Akwasi Appiah. I stood solidly behind my coach during the difficult times in Brazil and in some cases supported the endeavours of the team financially when the need arose to make sure his tenure and my captaincy would not suffer challenges and to ride with the assertion, ” A Ghanaian coach can do it.”