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Sports News of Thursday, 8 January 2015

Source: Ghana Soccernet

Inkoom dropped as Grant releases final squad

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England-based striker Kwesi Appiah and Norway-based attacker Mahatma Otoo have gatecrashed Ghana’s final 23-man squad for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations while experienced defender Samuel Inkoom has been dropped from the travelling party, the Ghana FA has announced.

Injuries look to have robbed new coach Avram Grant of the chance of naming his strongest squad for the competition with playmaker Kwadwo Asamoah, Abdul Majeed Waris and Jeffrey Schlupp all nursing injuries.

Ruthless ex-Chelsea coach Avram Grant also axed South Africa-based defender Kwabena Adusei and midfielder Ibrahim Moro from the squad for the tournament in Equatorial Guinea.

The squad, which is dominated by foreign-based players, sees several players named for their maiden appearances in African football’s flagship event.

The Israeli manager named ten players in the squad who will be making their maiden appearances in Africa’s flagship football event which kicks off in 17 January.

Youngsters Baba Rahman, Daniel Amartey, Frank Acheampong David Accam and Kwesi Appiah will all be making their first appearances at the Africa Cup of Nations.

Goalkeeper Fatau Dauda is the only home-based player in the squad which will be fighting the for title. Last-minute injury to striker Abdul-Majeed Waris means Norway-based attacker Mahatma Otoo has been given a late call-up to join the squad. England-based defender Jeffrey Schlupp was also excluded from the squad because of an injury that will rule him out of action for about three weeks. Defender Samuel Inkoom, midfielder Ibrahim Moro and Kwabena Adusei, who were part of the provisional squad were all left out of the final 23-man squad. The Black Stars will be led at the tournament by captain Asamoah Gyan who joins Andre Ayew, Jonathan Mensah, Emmanuel Agyemang-Badu and Mubarak Wakaso will provide the needed experience for the tournament in Equatorial Guinea. Appiah looks to have profited from the good form he has shown since joining the Black Stars in the pre-tournament camping which saw him scoring in his debut game for Ghana.

Ghana squad

Goalkeepers: Razak Braimah (Mirandes, Spain), Fatau Dauda (AshGold) and Ernest Sowah (Don Bosco, DR Congo)

Defenders: Harrison Afful (Esperance, Tunisia), John Boye (Erciyesspor, Turkey), Jonathan Mensah (Evian, France), Awal Mohammed (Maritzburg, South Africa), Baba Rahman (Augsburg, Germany), Gyimah Edwin (Mpumalanga Black Aces, South Africa), Daniel Amartey, (FC Copenhagen, Denmark)

Midfielders: Rabiu Mohammed (Krasnodar, Russia), Emmanuel Agyemang-Badu (Udinese, Italy), Afriyie Acquah (Parma, Italy), Solomon Asante (T.P. Mazembe, DR Congo), Christian Atsu (Everton, England), Mubarak Wakaso (Celtic, Scotland), Andre Ayew (Olympique Marseille, France), Frank Acheampong (Anderlecht, Belgium), David Accam (Chicago Fire, USA)

Strikers: Jordan Ayew (Lorient, France), Mahatma Otoo (Songdal, Norway) Asamoah Gyan (Al Ain, UAE), Kwesi Appiah (Cambridge United, England).

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