World Cup 2022: The likes of Ronaldo and Pepe are ageing; Ghana can qualify from Group H – Saani Daara

world cup 2022 the likes of ronaldo and pepe are ageing ghana can qualify from group h saani daara
Ibrahim Saani Daara 1

Former Director of Communications of the Ghana Football Association (GFA), Ibrahim Saani Daara, has expressed optimism in the ability of the Black Stars of Ghana, to qualify from the group stages of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

According to the former GFA Spokesperson, the senior national team have what it takes to excel beyond the preliminary stages of the competition, which is scheduled to begin in November this year.

He was speaking in an interview with Evans Mensah on Top Story on Friday, in reaction to the 2022 World Cup Draw, where the Black Stars have been pitched against Portugal, Uruguay and Korean Republic in Group H.

Mr. Saani Daara indicated that, even though Ghana’s placement in Group H, poses a challenge, the team can progress if the handlers put relevant measures in place.

“It’s a good draw. All these three teams, we’ve played them before. And when we played them, we gave a good account of ourselves, and I think that with the right preparations and the right approach and praying that our squad is injury-free, we’ll be able to make it to the second round of the World Cup.

I’m very very confident. If we prepare well, we have sanity and serenity in camp and there are not distractions, the boys will be determined to be able to do something”, he said.

Mr. Daara added that, “Portugal, yes, they were in Port 1 of our group, so therefore you’ll obviously expect them to be global giants, but they’re not the giants that they were few years ago.

Most of their players that we know are ageing. Somebody like Cristiano Ronaldo, Pepe and co are a bit passing their prime. So when they meet young players, it’s going to be very very difficult for them”.

Touching on the team’s fortunes in the upcoming mondial, he opined that the only team in Ghana’s group, that may upset the chances of the Black Stars will be the Korea Republic. Mr. Daara made this assertion based on how the Koreans have fared in their previous World Cup campaigns.

Based on this, he cautioned the team to remain focused in their preparations.

He also urged the media and supporters to tone down on commentaries and narratives that will create an unhealthy psyche for the team ahead of their appearance in the tournament.

Meanwhile, scores of Ghanaians have taken to social media to express their views on the possibilities that await the Black Stars.

In a series of comments on Twitter, many football-loving fans have turned their attention to Uruguay, owing to Ghana’s infamous World Cup quarter-finals match against Uruguay in 2010.

According to them, Ghana is up for a revenge against the Sky Blue of Uruguay in Qatar in November.

Ghana’s journey to the World Cup

After eight years without an appearance on the world’s biggest international stage, Ghana has made a return to the 2022 World Cup to be hosted in Qatar.

Drawn in a group with South Africa, Ethiopia and Zimbabwe it did not come as an easy task. Ghana began its World Cup qualifiers on September 3rd, 2021, at home against Ethiopia.

Mubarak Wakaso’s 35th-minute goal was enough to secure the Black Stars its first win of the qualifiers.

Three days later Ghana had to face South Africa at the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg but unfortunately lost to Bafana Bafana by a 1-0 scoreline.

Returning to play at Cape Coast stadium on the 9th of October 2021, the Black Stars had a convincing 3-1 victory against Zimbabwe and went to Harare to secure a 1-0 victory as well.

Ethiopia after losing to South Africa home and away needed to find themselves back in contention for the only qualification spot. Playing at the Orlando Stadium in Johannesburg, a neutral ground. Both nations went home with the points shared after a 1 -1 draw.

It came down to Ghana and South Africa fighting for first place to qualify for the next round. Ghana came out victors at the Cape Coast stadium.

Drawn against Nigeria in the playoff round of the qualifier, Ghana drew goalless at Baba Yara Stadium and qualified on the away goal rule in Abuja after a 1-1 draw.

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