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Mavis Appiah: Breaking the gender barrier in Ghanaian coaching

Mavis Appiah

DC United head coach, Mavis Appiah takes her first steps towards glory.

Women’s football has been on the rise all around the world and it is quite evident in the increased coverage of women’s matches and competitions.

The Women’s World Cup is now followed more closely around the world and the top players are now more recognisable and found a bit more in conversations.

Of course, things can and need to get better.

The women’s UEFA Champions League organised in Europe should be given more attention while the Confederation of African Football (CAF), under new President Ahmad Ahmad must take steps towards organising such competitions to add to the existence of the Women’s African Nations Cup.

In Ghana, women’s football is not that strongly pushed and their game is in need of a huge injection.

But in all this, some women are making huge strides in making things better.

Enter the Queen

25 year-old Mavis Appiah, head coach of lower league side DC United in Brong Ahafo Region, is a shining light for women in football in Ghana.

It sounds really refreshing and she is bent on making her mark in Ghana.

She is well-educated too and she is prepared for the rough-and-tumble world of coach.

Her CV reads: 2016 graduating class of University of Education, Winneba. BSc Education. Coaching Licence C.

Appiah (left) issuing instructions to her players during training

She says that in the ideal situation, she should not be making the headlines because female coaches have become part of football.

“This is only news in Ghana because when you go to the foreign countries, women are part of football. I do not think this is that much of a big deal.

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For me, it is all about outwitting your opponents on the pitch and getting the work done. If you have that, you can coach any team.”

Mavis’ journey

Before Appiah moved to providing guidance from the dugout, she played in her primary school, senior high school and university in the GUSA Games but she found her ‘calling’ to coach and she has not looked back.

It is very common for new-age coaches to point to Sir Alex Ferguson, Jose Mourinho or the late Sir Cecil Jones Attuquayefio as their role models but Appiah has enormous reverence for former Asante Kotoko head coach, Mas-Ud Dramani.

Mas-Ud Dramani

She speaks of him in very hallowed terms and she is very appreciative of his words of wisdom.

“Didi Dramani always gives me wisdom and guidance. If I face any challenges in my work, he always helps me out. He will always be my mentor.”

Breaking barriers

But how is she received by her players? Is she intimidated? Are they apprehensive?

Appiah reveals that knowledge of one’s area of work eliminated all barriers and her competence places her in a position of power and respect.

“When you coaching male players, they will not question or doubt you when you know what you are about. When you present your philosophy clearly, they will not show any negative attitude and they will be willing to work hard for you.”

On Monday, March 27,  Mavis and her charges face Kintampo FC in the MTN FA Cup preliminary round and even before the match, she is exhibiting the tendencies all top coaches need. Confidence.

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She believes she can win the match and progress to the next round.

“I admit that I do not know a lot about the opponent but that does not bother me. I want to get the victory.”

Mavis Appiah is aiming for the big time and she is not waiting for some distant time in the future to get her laurels. She wants to win them as soon as possible and she is eyeing the MTN FA Cup.

Source: citi sports

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