Three in search of two Last-16 slots tonight


Hosts Ghana are likely to take the defensive approach as they will be looking for a clean sweep of their group when they meet Morocco in the African Nations Cup today.

The Black Stars need only draw their final Group A game in Accra to make sure they finish top of the standings and avoid a likely meeting with growing favourites, the Ivory Coast, in the quarter-finals.

Gambian referee Modou Sowe has been selected to handle the game between tournament hosts and Morocco at the Ohene Djan Stadium tonight

Modou Sowe will be supported on the lines by South Africa’s Molefe Enock and Chichenga Kenneth from Zambia.

Morocco, having started the tournament with a 5-1 thumping of Namibia before losing 3-2 to Guinea, need to beat Ghana if they are to progress past the group stage.

Guinea and Morocco both have three points but Guinea has the seemingly easier match on Monday, against Namibia in Sekondi.

Both Group A games will kick off simultaneously at 19h00.

“Morocco will be tough because they have a fine team but you will see warriors on the pitch on Monday,” says Ghana coach Claude Le Roy, who has called for more support from home fans.

Despite player unrest in his own camp, with the Gyan brothers threatening to walk out of the Black Stars’ squad following criticism after their unconvincing 1-0 win over Namibia, Leroy was upbeat.

“I've got a lot of respect for Morocco, but they're under pressure, we’re not.”

Without doubt, Le Roy will be digging deep into his reservoir in search of a worthy replacement for Laryea Kingston, who has been sidelined by the fact that he has attracted two yellow cards in as many matches.

Without Kingston, the French mentor still remains upbeat about beating the Moroccans with Sulley Ali Muntari; Asamoah Gyan; Michael Essien and Junior Agogo. All are expected to keep their starting places.

Morocco hope to have Sofiane Alloudi, who scored a hat-trick in their opening match, back from injury to improve their chances.

Asked if the forward would be fit for Monday Michel replied: “He got injured, he's received treatment, now he’s recovering. I can’t say whether he'll be back in time, I’ll just have to wait and see.”

Without their inspirational skipper, Pascal Feindounou, the Syli Nationale are expected to labour but would have enough depth in Ismael Bangoura, Mansare and Youla to get the results and goals for a place in the last eight.

The Namibians, who are effectively out after losing their first two games, are hoping to exit the tournament with their reputation enhanced.

“We want to prove we are a team that belongs here with the big guys,” says their Bundesliga-based midfielder.

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