Preview: Brazil v Ghana

With this World Cup continuing to be one for the favourites, the pressure is building for there to be an eventual upset and with that in mind people see African debutants Ghana as the giant killer in waiting as they face five time champion Brazil.

    Will he kiss Ghana's or his own hopes goodbye?

    The South Americans are already announcing their respect for the Black Stars.

    "We must not be complacent as they have plenty of quality players," said Brazilian striker Ronaldo.

    "We've watched their matches. We will try and prey on their weaknesses."

    Brazil have lost striker Robinho for the match and it is appears that coach Carlos Alberto Parreira will revert to the Ronaldo/ Adriano partnership after benching the Inter Milan striker for the final group game against Japan.

    There was a particular rumour floating around that Ronaldo preferred being paired with lithe clubmate Robinho, however he dismissed it out of hand.

    "It was no better or worse with Robinho. Everybody is in the same boat, those who play will give everything and those who don't will wait for their chance," the 29 year old said.

    "The squad is in good shape. We are united and confident that we can go the whole way. Every one of us is ready to make sacrifices to win the World Cup."

    The portly striker who faced stinging criticism regarding his weight and fitness in the opening two matches of the World Cup now stands on the verge of a new record after his double against Japan drew him level with Germany's Gerd Mueller on 14 World Cup goals.

    Already the holder of "the biggest
    teeth in football mantle" will
    Ronaldo get another record

    However, he maintains that the record is not something he is focusing on.

    "I'm not obsessed being the leading scorer at the World Cup or breaking records," Ronaldo said.

    "My target is to win the World Cup and if I score goals all the better.
      
    "I am of course delighted to have equalled the record of 14 goals and if I take it to a new level, I will be even happier.
      
    "But the objective remains as it always has been - to win the World Cup."

    That is also the objective of Ghana who for now are setting out to reach the quarter finals in their first World Cup.

    It is also a stage of the competition which no African team has progressed from.

    Despite the pressure the Ghanians are confident of causing a huge upset.

    "No fear"

    "We're happy we're going to face Brazil. No fear. No fear," said captain Stephen Appiah.

    "We play the same style too. That's why we have a chance against them."

    Coach Ratomir Dujkovic has been dealt a blow with the suspension of star midfielder Michael Essien, however his focus has been on preparing those players available to him.


    Richard Kingston is ready for a
    busy day at the office

    "It's always tough in the World Cup against strong teams, especially for debutantes," the 60 year old Serb said.

    "I say just to treat them like any other team. I'm always telling them it's 11-on-11 and the ball is in the middle.
      
    "It's very difficult to stop all the stars from Brazil. We have to prepare a strategy to stop them and how to score some goals.
      
    "I'm sure the Brazilians must suffer if they are going to win."

    Brazil have been expected to contest the final since they arrived in Germany, but are yet to hit top gear, can Ghana be the ones to punish them should they produce another off colour performance?

    SOURCE: Aljazeera + Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    We dialled more than 35,000 random phone numbers to paint an accurate picture of displacement across South Sudan.

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Meet the man on a mission to take down Cambodia's timber tycoons and expose a rampant illegal cross-border trade.

    Pakistan's tribal areas: 'Neither faith nor union found'

    Pakistan's tribal areas: 'Neither faith nor union found'

    Residents of long-neglected northwestern tribal belt say incorporation into Pakistan has left them in a vacuum.