News Live Scores
Africa U23 Cup of Nations

U23 Afcon: Ghana and Ivory Coast have high-level players - Yaw Yeboah 

10:27 GMT 19/11/2019
Yaw Yeboah of Ghana
The Black Meteors No.10 previews Tuesday's encounter with their West African neighbours in the continental competition 

Ghana skipper Yaw Yeboah admits the team are under pressure to beat Cote d'Ivoire in their semi-final clash at the ongoing Africa U23 Cup of Nations (Afcon) in Egypt.

On their first appearance at the continental showpiece since its inception in 2011, the Black Meteors face the young Elephants in a match which will see the victors rewarded with tickets to both Friday's final and the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games in Japan.

Ghana have not qualified for the Olympics since 2004.

“We are under pressure to qualify for the Olympics but we are dealing with the pressure," Celta Vigo midfielder Yeboah said at the pre-match press conference on Monday.

"As players, we were able to avoid making mistakes and won the match against Mali [in our last group game] despite the pressure on us.

“All the players are ready because tomorrow is really an important day for all of us.

"Mentally and physically we are prepared and believe with hard work and determination we will qualify for the Olympics and the final on Friday."

Follow a 1-1 opening day draw with Cameroon, Ghana fell 3-2 to hosts Egypt in a drama-packed Matchday Two fixture and bounced back with a 2-0 triumph over Mali to finish second in Group A.

Cote d'Ivoire, meanwhile, placed top in Group B following two wins and one defeat.

“We are expecting a tough match against Cote D’Ivoire because they are one of the best teams in Africa and both countries have players who play at high levels," Yeboah added.

"But for us, it will be an achievement to reach the finals and book our tickets to the Olympic Games. That is our biggest motivation and we are aiming to achieve it on Tuesday."

Ivory Coast will be without talisman Christian Kouame who has been ruled out of the remainder of the tournament due to injury.