Former Black Stars captain, Stephen Appiah is of the view the 2017 AFCON in Gabon will be very tough for Ghana.
The Black Stars have been drawn in Group D alongside Egypt, Mali and Uganda. Ahead of the Russia 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers Ghana are in the same group with Egypt and Uganda.
The Cranes of Uganda frustrated Ghana to a goalless scoreline at the Tamale Sports Stadium in the first round of the World Cup qualifiers. Egypt who are seven times African Champions started their campaign with a sweet victory of Congo in Kinshasa. Ghana will play Egypt in Alexandrea on November 13th.
Ghana lost to the Malians in the 2013 AFCON where they beat the Black Stars 3-1 to place third at the competition but the former Juventus star believes the competition is going to be difficult for the Black Stars.
Speaking to Asempa Sports, Stephen said, “I watched the Malians playing against Ivory Coast and it was a tough game. Anytime we play against especially the Malians, it is always tough but football now is not about the name so I still see it to be tough.
“I think everybody wants to win but being a Ghanaian, I hope Ghana seal through because we are playing Egypt and Uganda in our world cup qualifying group so I will urge the players to beat Egypt and Uganda so it will be easy for you to play them in Gabon but with no doubt, it is going to be difficult.
Many is of the view that the strength of the team has been dwindling for some time now but quizzed if he support that idea, Appiah said, “Comparing the players they play today in the national team, with no doubt they play good football but with our time, most of the players played regularly in our teams but as it stands it is not happening in the team and Black Stars don’t even have a playmakers in the team but the players are eager to do something for the country and I hope they can archive that.
“Avram Grant was able to take the team to the finals of the 2015 AFCON but being the coach of the Black Stars, you have to stay in the country and monitor our league as well. We are not saying that he should stay in the country all the time but he has to be here and monitor. I was able to play the national team because of Hearts of Oak and against the Ugandans at the Tamale Sports Stadium, there was no player to command the team to push forward and I will urge the coach to stand on his feet and do what is right because he is dull to my liking.” He added.
The 2017 AFCON kicks off 15 January to 05 February