Afriyie Acquah: Yeni Malatyaspor ace focused on Ghana return 

Afriyie Acquah, 2019 Afcon
The former Parma man speaks on his international ambitions in the wake of being sidelined since the last Afcon tournament 

Turkey-based midfielder Afriyie Acquah has not given up hopes of making a return to Ghana's national team under coach CK Akonnor.

The Yeni Malatyaspor man has not been called up since representing the Black Stars at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt, where the team disappointingly failed to make the quarter-final, their first time of being unable to reach the last eight since the 2006 tournament, coincidentally also held in Egypt.

In January, Akonnor replaced James Kwasi Appiah, who guided Ghana at the last Afcon. The new man is expected to soon unveil his squad for November's Afcon 2022 qualifying double-header against Sudan.

"I always say the national team is not for one person, there are many Ghanaian players but this is not like club football, so a coach needs a group of people who will play together for a long time so they get to each other," Acquah, formerly on the books of Serie A side Empoli, said on Max FM.

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"I have no issues not been called but anytime I am called I will give my all like I do always.

"Since we returned from 2019 Afcon and changed coaches, the new coach has not called me on phone yet to discuss my return but I am still working hard so that anytime I am called I will honour the invitation.

"Of course, everyone watches football, I am doing well, anyone who knows me knows what I can do, ever since the season started, I play week in week out."

So far this season, Acquah has featured in all six games played by Malatyaspor in the Turkish Super Lig.

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The 28-year-old has over 30 appearances for Ghana since making his international debut in a friendly against Chile in 2012.

He was among the players who missed their penalty kicks as the Black Stars lost to Cote d'Ivoire in a shoot-out in the final of the 2015 Afcon tournament.

He has not only represented Ghana at continental level but also at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, where the Black Stars suffered a disappointing first-round elimination.