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C. K. Akonnor Explains Why He’s Delighted With Ghana-Morocco AFCON Draw

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Black Stars Coach, C. K. Akonnor

The Black Stars boss reacts to being paired against the Atlas Lions for their tournament opener.

Ghana coach CK Akonnor believes his team have good knowledge about Morocco ahead of their clash at the Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon next year, and is delighted after the Black Stars and the Atlas Lions were pitted together.

The two teams are set for a showdown at the continental gathering, after being drawn together in Group C, which also contains Gabon and the Comoros Island.

It will be the second meeting between the Black Stars and the Atlas Lions in six months after the latter beat the former 1-0 in an international friendly fixture in June.

“I think we had a strong friendly with Morocco a few months ago and thank God they are in our group. It gives us an idea of the opponent,” Akonnor has told 3sports. “I am thankful to the Ghana FA for organising the friendly,”

In Cameroon, Ghana will begin their title quest with an encounter with Morocco on January 10, before facing Gabon in their second fixture four days later.

The Black Stars’ last group tie has been set against Comoros on January 18.

“I think [the draw] is okay,” Akonnor said. “I didn’t come here with a lot of expectations regarding which group I want to be in. Nowadays football is football so you cannot expect anything.

“We are preparing feverishly for this tournament and the coming matches in the world cup and I am sure we will be ready.”

The continental gathering will be Akonnor’s first Afcon tournament as a coach.

In January last year, he took office as Black Stars coach, replacing James Kwasi Appiah who guided the team to the last Afcon tournament in 2019 where they suffered a Round of 16 exit.

“It’s the first time but I am not under any pressure,” said Akonnor. “You guys give me pressure in Ghana but I am okay.

“Ghanaians are yearning for the cup and we will do our best to get it.”

On their 23rd appearance at Afcon, Ghana will be seeking to conquer the continent for the first time since beating Libya on penalties to win the 1982 showpiece for the fourth title.

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