Remember the 2010 World Cup tie between Uruguay and Ghana?
If you've forgotten, let us refresh your memory a bit. After being level on goals, Ghana and Uruguay were to proceed to the penalties.
However, on the 120th minute, Luis Suarez blocked a ball clearly going goal side with his hand, getting himself sent off and breaking African hearts.
Had Suarez not resorted to such tactics, Ghana would have gone on to the semifinals of the World Cup, the first African Nation to have done so.
Nevertheless, all hope had not been lost. Ghana were presented a golden opportunity to etch their mark on the annals of football history, as they were provided with a spot kick.
Enter Asamoah Gyan.
Under immense pressure, Asamoah Gyan took to the spot. And we all know what ensued. Gyan took the penalty and rattled the cross bar, thereby taking the game to penalties.
Sadly, Ghana lost.
Gyan did face some criticism from people for failing to convert the penalty kick, and perhaps the biggest criticism leveled against him was his own.
Fast-forward to 2012.
In the recently concluded African Cup of Nations, Ghana lost to eventual winners Zambia in the semifinals. It was perhaps one of the biggest upsets in sports, as Ghana were deemed as the favorites for the tournament. News has surfaced that Asamoah Gyan has quit international football.
With Ghana facing key upcoming international matches, especially the World Cup qualifiers, this decision shows a complete lack of responsibility.
Every player gets his fair share of criticism, and rightly so.
When you under-perform or when there is so much at stake, supporters will show discontent. However, this is not when you quit—instead you try to regain their trust and show that you are willing to contribute everything to the game
When you are willing to bask in the glory, you should also be able to face any sort of criticism leveled against you.