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Sports News of Friday, 30 October 2015


2016 CHAN:Oti Akenten sure of Stars qualification

Francis Oti Akenten Francis Oti Akenten

A technical director at the Ghana Football Association (GFA), Oti Akenten, has tipped the local Black Stars to survive the Ivroian threat and sail through to the next Africa Nations Championship (CHAN) to be hosted by Rwanda early next year.

He, however, admitted that the encounter today would be a tough one since tactically both teams appeared almost at par.

Speaking in an interview with the Graphic Sports, Coach Akenten was hopeful that the match officials would also do their bit to ensure the better side carried the day.

He said Coach Maxwell Konadu and his technical team had what it would take to come up with a game plan which would work for the team’s qualification.

On calls for the local Black Stars to be handled by Coach Avram Grant, Mr Akenten debunked that position and said “Maxwell is an equally good lieutenant and can, therefore, handle the team.

“With Maxwell handling the local Black Stars team, that puts him in a better stead to recommend players who are playing well for the senior national team”, he noted and called on Ghanaians to continue to support and pray for the team.

The local Black Stars beat their Ivorian counterparts 2-1 at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium in the first leg qualifier a fortnight and are expected to repeat the dose in the second leg in Abidjan today.

Already, Coach Maxwell Konadu has acknowledged the difficult and tricky nature of the clash but he is hopeful that the local Black Stars will qualify for the tournament fixed for early January next year.

To this end, the Black Stars assistant coach, with support from his deputy coach Dauda Luthrodt, will be banking his hopes on the likes of goalkeeper Richard Ofori, Godfred Saka, skipper Abeiku Ainooson, Patrick Asmah, Lawrence Lartey and striker Joel Fameyeh to silence the homesters, whose pedigree cannot be underrated.