Asamoah Gyan, Ghana’s all-time leading scorer, claims that his participation in the 2008 AFCON prevented him from joining English Premier League powerhouse Manchester City.
Gyan, who was then playing for Udinese in Italy’s Serie A, was not at his best, drawing heavy criticism from Ghanaians who had high hopes for the Black Stars’ chances of winning the tournament.
The athlete believed the critiques were excessive and were on the verge of quitting the Black Stars camp if then-Ghanaian president John Agyekum Kuffour hadn’t intervened.
However, Gyan claims in an interview that he missed out on the move to Man City because he sacrificed to play in the CAN 2008. Man City subsequently signed Emmanuel Adebayor.
“Before CAN 2008, Man City were interested in signing me. Sven-Göran Eriksson was the coach at the time and they were keen to sign me,” he told Dan Kwaku Yeboah TV.
“My manager asked that I go and treat [some pains I had been feeling before the AFCON], and then I sign for Man City, but I told him I wanted to play at the Africa Cup [of Nations] because it was going to be my first one and was going to be hosted by Ghana.
“So when Ghanaians criticised me, I was pained a lot because I left a lot of money to sacrifice and play at the tournament, but they didn’t appreciate it.
“So they signed Adebayor after they had missed out on me.”
Though Gyan hasn’t been actively involved in football since leaving Legon Cities in 2021, he hasn’t yet confirmed his retirement from the sport.