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2022 World Cup Qualifiers: Ghana coach Akonnor assesses team readiness for Ethiopia showdown

2022 World Cup Qualifiers: Ghana coach Akonnor assesses team readiness for Ethiopia showdown

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The Black Stars boss previews the first game in their quest to play in Qatar next year

Ghana coach CK Akonnor believes his team are adequately drilled to beat Ethiopia in their 2022 World Cup qualifying opener on Friday.

The Black Stars take on the Walias in a Group G fixture in Cape Coast, three days ahead of a big away encounter with South Africa.

“We’ve had a couple of days to prepare. We don’t have much time. We are aware of the opponents, and before we got here, the players were aware of what to do,” Akonnor said at the pre-match press conference on Thursday.

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“We’ve tried to do a couple of training sessions relating to the opponent which will give us victory. We want to be victorious in tomorrow’s match. For that matter, I’ll say we’re ready for tomorrow’s game.

“It’s a game that we’ll want to win. We want to start well like the captain [Andre Ayew] said. But of course, it’s a journey and from the beginning of the game to the end is not going to be easy. I’m aware. I’m very courageous my boys are ready, they will deliver, and that’s what matters.

“We’re coming across an opponent that likes to possess the ball and that’s what we’re focusing on. We want to try as much as we can.”

Ghana’s group also contains Zimbabwe, whom the Black Stars will face home and away in October.

Only the group winners at the end of the campaign will qualify for the third and final round of the qualification series.

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“This is a World Cup [qualifications]. There are six matches. By the sixth match we want to be on top, this means that we want to be focused and start very well. I trust my boys that they will deliver,” Akonnor added.

“We want to win [against Ethiopia but] you cannot just get up and say 5-0, 2-0, I’m sure that’s what you want to hear. I won’t be able to tell you that. What matters most is for us to win this match.

“We believe that once we do the things that we want to do on the field of play, tomorrow we will be successful.”

Ghana have qualified for the World Cup on three previous occasions, their last appearance being at Brazil 2014.

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