Akunnor defends Ayew's performance after Uganda win

The former midfielder has defended the Villans striker amid criticisms following his 'poor performance' against Uganda on Tuesday

Former Ghana captain C.K Akunnor has downplayed claims that Aston Villa striker Jordan Ayew was the Black Stars' weakest link during their 1-0 victory over Uganda at the Africa Cup of Nations on Tuesday.

The 24-year-old fluffed several opportunities that came his way especially in the second-half. However, the former midfielder insists Ayew has been unfairly criticised considering his general output for the team.

''I agree that he messed up on a couple of times but that is normal. We should not blame him too much,'' Akunnor told Ultimate FM.

''I must admit that we are being too harsh on Jordan Ayew because in the game against Uganda, he was doing a lot of track back for his brother and tried to reach Asamoah Gyan on several occasions. The concentration is on Asamoah Gyan so it was important that Jordan and Andre Ayew take advantage," he said.

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He added: ''He was able to take men on when he moved to the right position. This is our first match and we won. We should look for areas to improve especially in our next matches not rather be on one player and criticize him every day.''

Ghana will lock horns with Mali on Saturday in the second game of Group D and a win will seal a qualification to the quarterfinals.

Avram Grant's men will miss the services of left-back Abdul Baba Rahman, who has been ruled out of the tournament due to a knee injury sustained against Uganda.