Its not very often a student athlete gets to share the dressing room with their idols but that would be the case of University for Development Studies student and Ghanaian Premier league side Real Tamale United midfielder David Sandan Abagna who will be hoping to make his debut with the national football team at the upcoming African Cup of Nations in Cameroon.
Abagna has been named in the squad for the Ghanian national football side slated to represent the country at the 33rd edition of the Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon in 2022. Abagna describes his selection as the best thing that left him shocked “Initially when I heard the announcement that I was included, for some moments it felt unreal, I was very surprised and excited, I cannot explain the feeling but I was just filled with so much excitement, I said a silent prayer of thanks giving to God for his favour then I spoke to my mom and then some friends”.
Pursueing a diploma in Education as a professional footballer Abagna attributes his progress to the effectiveness of School sports in Ghana “School sports in Ghana is one thing that has been from Time immemorial and was part of most of our childhoods. But at the university level its different, the competition at that level is very high, it also shapes so much talent for the country. I have played in university competitions and championships and these competitions nurtures the talents available and prepares you for the big leagues”.
His club experiences includes the Ashanti Gold and Wa All stars. He won his first league title in his debut season with Wa All Stars in 2016, “Because my first team was far away from home to play in Tamale by myself it came with so many experiences and then to the south where I met so many people and different lessons with them. I feel those years have shaped my life in so many ways and now I am back to my home town with my current club which feel different because I get overwhelmed by the love people show me and the comfort of family”.
Abagna In July 2017 at the age of 17 years, was a late call up into the Ghana A’ national football team, ahead of the 2018 CHAN qualifiers and will now play in the biggest football competiton in the continent, “I am looking forward to an amazing experience, I am excited to meet the other players who I have only previously watched on TV, people that have represented the country before, cheered and supported them, getting the opportunity to share a locker room with them is just going to be an amazing experience and having that opportunity play against other nations and their stars at that top level, I am just expecting a great experience”
The TotalEnergies 2021 Africa Cup of Nations for sponsorship reasons, is scheduled to be the 33rd edition of the Africa Cup of Nations, the biennial international men’s football championship of Africa organised by the Confederation of African Football (CAF). The tournament is scheduled to be hosted by Cameroon, and will take place from 9 January to 6 February 2022.
The tournament was originally scheduled to be played in June and July 2021 but the CAF announced on 15 January 2020 that due to unfavourable climatic conditions during this period, the tournament would take place from 9 January to 6 February 2021. On 30 June 2020, the CAF moved the tournament for the second time to January 2022 following the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic across the continent, whilst retaining the name 2021 Africa Cup of Nations for sponsorship purposes.
Algeria are the defending champions, having won the 2019 edition.