Bring on Nigeria, say Ghana

Host nation are on a high after topping Group A, and are ready to take on any team.

    Ghana players are in a bullish mood after moving through to the quarters on their home turf [AFP]

    Assessing the quarter-final challenge lying ahead for the Black Stars, Claude Le Roy, Ghana coach, said: "Nigeria are a very strong team but they have been having some difficulties, the atmosphere with them doesn't seem to be so good.
     
    "We are fired up and ready to meet any side."
     
    "We are fired up and ready to meet any side."

    Claude Le Roy, Ghana coach

    After another fine showing from midfield stars Michael Essien and Sulley Muntari, responsible for the goals that sent Morocco out of the tournament, Le Roy says there is a feeling of confidence in the hosts' camp.
     
    "It seems that day by day we're becoming very difficult to beat. I've got the same feeling as I had in Morocco in 1988."
     
    The French-born coach was referring to the year he led Cameroon to the African title.
     
    "With Cameroon we had to beat Morocco on the way to the final too, so perhaps that's a good omen."
     
    Le Roy, who is not known for making rash predictions but says the current Ghana squad is on a par with that title winning Cameroon side, got his tactics just right against Morocco, allowing more space for Essien in midfield which worked wonders.
     
    Adaptability
     
    "For our next game I'll have to work out a different strategy. The first quality of intelligence is to be able to adapt."
     
    A key element to Ghana's win over Morocco was the backing of the fans at the Ohene Djan Stadium in Accra, the same fans that had given the team, and especially striker Asamoah Gyann, such a hard time after their unconvincing 1-0 win over Namibia.
     
    "We need supporters to get behind the team," said Quincey Owusu Abeyie, Ghana's Celta Vigo striker.
     
    Nottingham Forest forward Junior Agogo, who was a constant threat to the Moroccan defence, said: "There was a bit of pressure before this game, but now we're buzzing to be through.
     
    "We hadn't played our best in our last two games, but we thought things would eventually come right for us."
     
    Hearts midfielder Laryeah Kingston will be available for Sunday's game in Accra after serving his one match suspension against Namibia.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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