2013 Africa Cup of Nations preview: Ghana

January 7, 2013
By: Nemanja Lazarevic

GhanaGhana may have four Africa Cup of Nations trophies to their name, but with the last one won back in 1982, it is fair to say the Black Stars will give everything to end the long drought in South Africa. Double win over Malawi saw Kwesi Appiah’s side qualify for the tournament finals, but the team haven’t been too impressive in the build up to the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations.

While the boss overlooked Milan’s Sulley Muntari and Marseille attacker Jordan Ayew, key forward Andre Ayew was forced to withdraw because of a hamstring injury, leaving the team desperately short of quality in attack. Everybody at the national team was, therefore, delighted to see captain Asamoah Gyan return to the international fold, but full-back Samuel Inkoom has been left out due to the lack of playing time at club level.

Ghana AFCON squad

Goalkeepers: Adam Kwarasey (Stromsgodset), Fatau Dauda (Ashanti Gold), Daniel Agyei (Liberty Professionals)

Defenders: John Paintsil (Hapoel Tel-Aviv), Harrison Afful (Esperance), Richard Kissi Boateng (Berekum Chelsea), John Boye (Rennes), Jonathan Mensah (Evian), Isaac Vorsah (Salzburg), Jerry Akaminko (Eskisehirspor), Awal Mohammed (Maritzburg United)

Midfielders: Christian Atsu (FC Porto), Anthony Annan (Osasuna), Derek Boateng (Dnipro), Emmanuel Agyemang Badu (Udinese), Kwadwo Asamoah (Juventus), Albert Adomah (Bristol City), Rabiu Mohammed (Evian), Mubarak Wakaso (Espanyol)

Forwards: Asamoah Gyan (Al Ain), Emmanuel Clottey (Esperance), Richmond Boakye Yiadom (Sassoulo).

Ghana AFCON History

With four titles and as many second-place finishes at Africa Cup of Nations, Ghana are one of the most successful nations on the continent, but the problem is they have only climbed the podium three times since winning their last title in 1982. The Black Stars came really close to winning their fifth trophy in 2010, but were narrowly beaten by Egypt in the final.

Players to Watch

With Ayew brothers missing out, captain Asamoah Gyan will be heavily relied on to produce the goals, and his 21 strikes in 13 league appearances for Al Ain should give him plenty of confidence ahead of the tournament in South Africa. Juventus midfielder Kwadwo Asamoah and Fulham-bound Derek Boateng will be in charge of the creative department, while youngsters Atsu and Boakye are tipped to make an impact at their first ever major tournament.

Group Matches

Sunday, January 20, 2013, v Congo DR (16:00 CET in Port Elizabeth)   1.4 4.33 6.5
Thursday, January 24, 2013 v Mali (16:00 CET in Port Elizabeth)
Wednesday, January 28, 2013 v Niger (18:00 CET in Port Elizabeth)


Ghana can be trusted to progress from group B, but they will have their work cut out for them in the quarter-finals, whoever they face of Angola, Morocco and hosts South Africa. The Black Stars again boast a very talented squad, but with several important players missing and lack of quality and experience up front, I am not sure they can go past the quarter-finals. Therefore, another disappointing campaign look on the cards for Kwesi Appiah’s side.

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