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Africa U23 Cup of Nations

Ghana's Obeng reflects on performance at U23 Afcon 

15:33 GMT 03/12/2019
Samuel Obeng Gyabaa Yaw Yeboah Ghana 2019 U23 Africa Cup of Nations
The Real Oviedo man looks back on time with the Black Meteors at the continental showpiece 

Ghana striker Samuel Obeng is overwhelmed by his exploits at the recent Africa U23 Cup of Nations in Egypt.

A surprise inclusion in the Black Meteors' final squad for the tournament, the Spain-based frontman emerged among the tournament surprise packages, seizing a substitute appearance in the opening game to play his way into a starting role for the rest of the competition.

He ended the championship with two goals and also contributed two assists and a sumptuous  'Panenka' during a shoot-out in a semi-final defeat to Cote d'Ivoire.

"To have gone is something very positive for me in many aspects, but what makes me more proud is that we function as a collective," Obeng told Elcomercio.

"The qualification for the Olympic Games was not achieved by a margin, but on an individual level, things went quite well. It was important as it was my first experience in Ghana.

"I didn't even think that I could be a starter, at least at the beginning. I counted on being a substitute throughout the championship and providing options.

"Neither did I think much when I decided to throw in one of the 'Panenka' penalties, but I saw it clear when I looked at the goalkeeper who was tall and was throwing himself to the sides during the shoot-out. I thought that if I scored, it would be a good memory."

Ghana ultimately finished fourth at the tournament following a third-place play-off defeat to South Africa.

The defeat denied the Black Meteors qualification to the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games in Japan.

Having left Ghana for Spain around the age of 10, Obeng only made a first return to the West African country when he joined camp during preparations for Afcon.

It was his first time with any of Ghana's national teams.