Back in early June, Ghanaian footballer Randy Juan Muller made headlines in the country. The player who flew to India to play in a local football club in Kerala, was stranded at the Mumbai airport for around two and a half months due to the travel ban amid the COVID-19 lockdown. Now, after 70 more days spending in the city of Mumbai, Muller will finally catch a flight back to Ghana on 21st August.
Back in November 2019, Randy Juan Muller came to India to play for Kerala’s seven-a-side team ORPC Kechery in the Sevens Football tournament.
Unfortunately, due to the travel ban imposed in March, he was stranded at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport, before he was shifted to a hotel in Mumbai in June with the help of Aaditya Thackeray, president of Yuva Sena which is Shiv Sena’s youth wing.
Randy Juan Muller will fly back to Ghana on 21st August
After spending almost three months at the airport, Muller was shifted to a hotel named Lucky Hotel in Bandra on 9th June, with the help of Yuva Sena office bearer Rahul Kanal.
“He (Muller) would spend his time at the airport’s fancy artificial gardens and somehow buy food from stalls and pass his time with the airport staff. Muller told me the airport staff was very helpful,” Kanal said back in June.
Muller is one of the 200-ish people stuck in India since the onset of the pandemic, and the Ghanaian embassy has arranged a rescue flight, which will fly them back on 21st August.
Speaking about his stay at the hotel for the past 70 days, Muller told TOI: “There wasn’t much to do because of the pandemic. I just saw a few places near the hotel. The people are very friendly.”
Maharashtra has been the worst COVID affected state in India, with over 604K positive cases and 20,265 deaths till date.
Aditya Thackeray took to Twitter yesterday on meeting with the player in person.
“Our footballer friend from Ghana, who spent more than 50 days at the airport before @AbhaGoradia brought it to our notice and @Iamrahulkanal made arrangements for his stay in Mumbai, Randy met me today!” Thackeray tweeted.
Our footballer friend from Ghana, who spent more than 50 days at the airport before @AbhaGoradia brought it to our notice and @Iamrahulkanal made arrangements for his stay in Mumbai, Randy met me today! pic.twitter.com/xT7FBt3tX3
— Aaditya Thackeray (@AUThackeray) August 18, 2020
It has been estimated by sources that Muller’s accommodation has costed Yuva Sena around 4.5 lakh Rupees, in addition to the Rs 80,000 flight ticket to Ghana.