The world’s oldest football Competition, the English Football Association Cup (F.A Cup) has seen different players from different countries partaking in the annual football competition.
Ghanaians Legends, Tony Yeboah for Leeds United, Asamoah Gyan for Sunderland, Sulley Alli Muntariand many more have graced the scenes of the F. A Cup but how many of them have actually won the coveted trophy.
The first Ghanaian footballer to win the F.A Cup is Michael Essien in 2007 with Chelsea Football Club.
The 2007 FA Cup Final was played on Saturday, 19 May 2007 between Chelsea and Manchester United.
It was the 126th FA Cup Final and the first to be played at the then new Wembley Stadium.
Michael Essien played all 120 minutes of the game as fellow Africa Didier Drgogba’s extra time win secured the win to make Essien the first Ghanaian to have a F.A Cup medal of his own.
Essien helped on the road to the final that year with a goal in Chelsea’s 4-0 win over Norwich in the Fifth round.
It did not take long for Ghana to have another winner in the F.A Cup, the following year in 2008, Sulley Ali Muntari won with Portsmouth.
The 127th F.A Cup Final took place between Cardiff City and Portsmouth on 17 May 2008.
Portsmouth won the match by a single goal, scored by Nwankwo Kanu in the 37th minute.
Like Essien, a year before him, Muntari scored a goal on route to the final after dispatching a penalty against Manchester United following a foul by united goalkeeper Tomasz Kuszczak on Milan Baroš which prompted Kuszczak’s dismissal, with the referee showing him a red card.
In 2009 Michael Essien return to take his second FA Cup medal with Chelsea after playing 61 minutes in the final.
Due to injuries that year Essien wasn’t as consistent as he used to be but was available for selection for then Coach Guus Hiddink.
Chelsea beat Everton 2-1 to clinch their 5th title and Essien’s second.
Three years later in 2012, Essien burst onto the scene again this time from the bench as he came on the field in the second half to ensure that Chelsea beat Liverpool 2-1.
Winning Essien his 3rd FA Cup finals.
Since 2012 Ghanaians were scarce in the FA Cup Finals.
Nine years down the line Daniel Amartey of Leicester city was an unused substitute in Leicester’s Narrow 1-0 win over Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea and clinch their very first F. A Cup.
The 25-year-old has had to battle serious injuries to return to the team and played an important role in the club’s journey to the finals.
Michael Essien till date is the only Ghanaian with the most English Football Association Cup (F.A Cup) having won 3 Cups all with Chelsea Football Club.
Story by: Kwesi Ewusi Nunoo | universnewsroom.com