Accra, Oct. 6, GNA - With little hope of making it to the 2018 World Cup
in Russia, the Black Stars of Ghana, would continue their quest for a
miraculous entry into the biggest global football event, with an away game
against the Cranes of Uganda on Saturday, at the Mandela National Stadium,
Namboole, in the capital Kampala.
The coutcome of the game either sustain the slim hopes of progressing to the football festival next year nor deal a final blow to the dreams of the Black Stars.
It is the penultimate match in the Federation of International Football Association (FIFA) 2018 World Cup qualifier, of which the Stars would need a win and count on a “bad” results for Egypt, who takes on Congo, later to ensure their dreams of getting closer to the global event a reality.
However, the Stars would have to go into the match without some key players some of whom were dropped by the head coach, whilst the rest were ruled out injuries.
Jordan and Andre Ayew, were not invited by the coach, whilst captain Asamoah Gyan, defender John Boye, Harrison Afful, Jonathan Mensah, slippery winger Christian Atsu, Thomas Agyapong were all sidelined due to various injuries.
Though a bother to coach Appiah, his belief in the quality of players at his disposal, some of them may be having their first major international exposure with the Black Stars, remains his major motivation ahead of the game.
This obviously stems from the outcome of the last match, against Congo, which saw a blend of experienced and inexperienced players delivering 5-1 victory over the Congolese at their own back yard.
The Ugandans, have never been an easy side for the Stars, but the recent form exhibited by the Stars in Congo, gives them muchj hope to overcome the East Africans.
Coach Appiah, could possibly rely on goalkeeper Richard Ofori, returnee Daniel Opare, Lumor Agbenyanor, Nicholas Opoku and Daniel Amartey, in defence whilst Ebenezer Ofori, Alfred Duncan, Frank Acheampong and Thomas Partey would build up the midfield.
Another returnee, Richmond Boakye Yiadom, who was the lead striker in the last game against Congo and scored twice is likely to partner, Patrick Twumasi in attack for Ghana and from their records, they could pose a serious threat to the Cranes.
Information gathered by the GNA Sports indicates, that, the Ugandans are highly uncomfortable with the relatively unknown side, that would be paraded by Ghana, a situation which has kept their technical team scratching their heads over how to handle these unknown players who could pull major surprises in the game.
But their coach Moses Basena, has not hidden his intentions of picking the maximum points at stake, saying “we are also playing for pride”.
The Ugandans for obvious reasons have no issues with injuries and looks good to present their regular players, who would be seeking to appease the over 45, 000 fans that would fill the stands to cheer them up.
For striker Emma Okwi who scored the only goal that, denied Egypt victory, last month, victory against Ghana Black Stars, is certain.
“Personally, i am set together with my teammates to encounter Ghana. This is almost a game of our lives, we must win to stay in contention for the World Cup slot.” Okwi - a forward with Tanzanian giants, Simba Sports Club noted.
The Stars should also expect a stiff competition from the experienced goalie Dennis Onyango, who has always stood between opponents of Uganda and victory.
It looks a dicey game for both sides, but the odds favour the home team, though Ghana has over the years won seven out of the 14 clashes, drawn four and lost three - an indication it could go anyway.