Ghana coach Akonnor undaunted by Morocco draw

Ghana’s national senior men’s football team head coach Charles Akonnor has expressed calmness after drawing North African giants Morocco in the group stages of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations.

The two teams are set for a showdown at the continental gathering, after being drawn together in Group C, which also contains Pierre Emerick Aubameyang’s Gabon and the Comoros Island.

The former Black Stars captain believes his team have good knowledge about Morocco ahead of their clash in Cameroon next year, having played and lost to them 1-0 in June 2021.

“I think we had a strong friendly with Morocco a few months ago, and thank God they are in our group. It gives us an idea of the opponent,” he told 3Sports on Wednesday.

Ghana will begin the charge for the title against the Atlas Lions (Morocco) on January 10, before facing Gabon on January 14, and will then take on Comoros four days later.

“I think the draw is okay. I did not come here with a lot of expectations regarding which group I want to be in. Nowadays, football is football, so you can expect anything,” added Akonnor.

“We are preparing feverishly for this tournament and the coming matches in the World Cup qualifiers, and I am sure we will be ready,” he later assured.

In January 2020, he took office as Black Stars coach, replacing James Kwasi Appiah, who guided the team to the last AFCON tournament in 2019, where they suffered a round of 16 exit.

“It is the first time, but I am not under any pressure, but it is you guys who give me pressure in Ghana, but I am okay. Ghanaians are yearning for the cup, and we will do our best to get it.”

Ghana will look to win their fourth trophy in history, with their last coming 39 years ago when they beat Libya on penalties in 1982.

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