No juju in football; it’s all psychological – Agyemang-Badu

Ghanaian international player Emmanuel Agyemang-Badu has rubbished claims of the use of juju or black magic in football.

According to the U-20 Fifa World Cup winner, there is no juju in football, adding that all enchantments by players and teams ahead of football games are nothing but psychological games.

There have been occasions where players of a team refuse to be the first to step out of the tunnel during a football game over hexing fears.

Some teams also, especially in the Ghana Premier League, walk out waving white handkerchiefs or wrap them around their wrists.

Some players also sprinkle salt and other whitish powdery substances on the pitch before kickoff, fuelling the perception of black magic in football.

Despite these rituals, Agyemang-Badu insists there is no juju in football.

Speaking on Ayekoo Ayekoo on Accra100.5FM, the former Udinese midfielder called on players to focus on their training and ignore the notion of playing with juju.

“Juju in football is not real, a lot of them are all psychological; if you’re not too advanced, you might believe there is some superstition in football,” he told show host Nana Romeo.

“I’ve played the Ghana premier league, I’ve played international football and we hear these things but from my experience, it’s not real, they are lies,” he added.

He advised: “If you don’t train hard and rely on superstition or juju, you’ll end up embarrassing yourself, so, I think working hard on the pitch, personal training and all is better than focusing your energy believing in juju, it’s all psychology”, he said.

Agyemang-Badu began his career at local club Berlin FC.

He played in the Ghana Premier League for Berekum Arsenal and later Asante Kotoko.

He has played internationally for clubs like Recreativo de Huelva, Udinese, Verona among others in the Italian Seria A.

He has played for the Ghanaian youth side through to the senior national team, the Black Stars, making 78 appearances with 11 goals.

Agyemang-Badu is most remembered for scoring the winning penalty that secured Ghana’s Fifa U-20 World Cup victory against Brazil in 2009 in Egypt.

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