Ghana FA explains ‘working day’ choice for Congo clash in WC qualifying

Andre Ayew, Daniel Amartey & Ghana celebrate
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Ghana football association spokesman Ibrahim Sannie Daara gives an insight into the decision

Ghana Football Association communications director Ibrahim Sannie Daara believes his outfit made the best resolution by opting to host Congo in the 2018 Fifa World Cup qualifiers on a working day.

Against the usual weekend choice, the Black Stars are set to take on the Red Devils on Friday, September 1 at the Baba Yara Stadium in Kumasi, four days before the return encounter in Brazzaville.

“You will want to expect that normally, as is the norm in Ghana, you will play your matches at the weekend - that is when you can generate maximum number of fans to come to the match," Sannie told Joy Sports.

"So definitely, playing on a Friday causes an uncomfortable situation in terms of giving all Ghanaians the opportunity to be able to watch the game, particularly those in Kumasi who will be at work by then.

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"Understandably, it is because of the television schedule and also [because] the football calendar is very tight.

‘’You also know that just three days later, we will have to travel to Congo to play them in Brazzaville that tells you that the calendar is tight."

It is a make or break for Ghana as a defeat will further wash down their chances of making Russia 2018, having lost one and drawn one of their opening two games.

"Also, they want to put as many matches as possible on television, so they too will have to squeeze on the rest," Sannie said.

"If you go for an option of playing on a Saturday or a Sunday, you are mandated to play your return game [on September 5] which means that you have about two days to go.

“If something happens to your travel plans, you are messed.

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"Remember the last time we played Zambia in the World Cup qualifier here, they arrived really late for the game.

"They did not plan well, so given the difficulties in terms of television and tightness of the calendar, I think it is for the best of it [to play Congo on Friday].”

Ghana currently sit third in Group E, five points adrift of leaders Egypt and three shy of second-placed Uganda.