Newcastle’s Christian Atsu hits back at critics who claim Ghana squad is motivated by money

Ghana have already qualified for the quarter-finals of the Africa Cup of Nations, but Christian Atsu has still had to respond to disgruntled fans

Newcastle United winger Christian Atsu denies that the Ghana squad are motivated by money as the Black Stars continue to draw criticism from their own supporters.

Atsu has been the star of Ghana’s Africa Cup of Nations campaign in Gabon so far, helping his nation to secure a quarter-final spot already after an impressive start to the group.

But, despite the Black Stars beginning their quest for a first Africa Cup of Nations title in 35 years in encouraging fashion, the Ghana players are still being accused of targeting money over success.

This stems form the awful 2014 World Cup campaign, when the Ghana squad allegedly demanded $100,000 (£83,000) appearance fees before taking on Portugal in Brazil two-and-a-half years ago.

“We want to win something for Ghana,” 25-year-old Atsu told

“We have been in this competition for long and always go home without that cup.

“Ghanaians are not happy, but we are determined to win this cup and it has nothing to do with money. With or without money, we will do our best to win the cup for Ghana.”

Christian Atsu of Newcastle United (Photo: Newcastle United)

Atsu is on a season-long loan at Newcastle from Chelsea, a deal which could be made permanent if the Magpies gain promotion.

And, though the winger insists the Ghana squad are not motivated by money, he believes they do deserve the remuneration for their efforts – when it is deserved.

“When we play we deserved to be paid because its our profession,” he added.

“The state will not take care of us when we grow old and need a pension. So whatever is due us must given to us.

“But we are not saying that without the money we will not play for the country.

“Money is secondary. All we want to do here is to win the competition, and for Ghanaians to be happy.“

Source: ChronicleLive