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Africa Cup of Nations Qualification

Ghana determined to see off Kenya amid football troubles back home, says coach Tanko

8:18 PM IST 06/09/18
Ghana bench 2
Excl: The Black Stars assistant coach speaks on their objectives for Saturday’s Afcon qualifier amid uncertainties facing the sport back home

Ghana assistant coach Ibrahim Tanko says troubles back home will not distract the Black Stars from their focus of registering a win in Saturday’s 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier away to Kenya.

The Black Stars are set to take on the Harambee Stars in a Group F matchday two encounter at the Moi International Sports Centre in Kasarani.

A corruption scandal of the Ghana Football Association, however, has left the country without a functioning FA presently, with all competitive local football matches and competitions suspended indefinitely. The situation was thrown up by the screening of an investigative documentary on June 6.

“The issues started around the time we were playing Iceland [in a friendly match]. The day we were playing the game was the day after they brought out the video,” Tanko told Goal.

“It’s not good playing for the national team with all these problems back home but this thing has happened for about a month or more now.

“We have the Liaison Team temporarily taking care of all the national teams. We met them and presented our programme to them.

“Now it’s all about football. We’re going to concentrate on our game. The only thing we can do now is concentrate and do a good job for the nation.”

Tanko then emphasized the Black Stars’ ambition of claiming all three points in Saturday’s fixture.

“The Kenyans have a very good team,” said, James Kwesi Appiah’s assistant.

“Most of their players play abroad, but we’re going there to win. We’re Ghana and we’re playing against Kenya, we can’t go for a draw or a loss.

“We hope that our players will be free from injuries during our preparations.”

Ghana currently top the group after an opening day win over Ethiopia, while Kenya sit third without a point.