Asamoah Gyan who scored the decisive goal in Ghana’s quarter-final win over the hosts in Luanda on Sunday said that he can’t wait to play against the Eagles in their semi-final clash today.

Gyan said: “Every Ghanaian knows how important it is to play Nigeria. We are ready for them and prepared and we will stick to the game plan that the coach has mapped out for us.

“We beat Nigeria two years ago. We have a lot of young guys in the team but we are concentrated and we will do everything possible to win.”

Black Stars coach Milovan Rajevic may be a ‘blow in’ from Serbia but he is acutely aware of how important victory over neighbours Nigeria is to every Ghana football fan.

Speaking through his trusted translator he said: “Ghana had the strength to beat Nigeria in 2008. My 2010 team has a lot of young players on it and it’s definitely going to be a tough match. But we go into the semi-final with confidence after winning our last two games.
“It’s always difficult to predict a result, that’s why football is such an interesting game, but we’ll do everything we can to win.”

Ghana are four time winners of the competition but their last win dates back to 1982.Gyan, Annan, and most of the rest of the squad were in high spirits at an early morning training session at the Angolan capital’s Coqueires stadium.

One player who was missing was skipper and team goalkeeper Richard Kingson who had the morning off.The two sides last met in the 2008 Africa Cup of Nations quarter-finals, with Ghana prevailing 2-1 only to go out 1-0 in the semi-final to Cameroon.

Rajevic has done wonders to get the limping Black Stars to the last four in Angola with stars like Michael Essien and Stephen Appiah among a raft of key players unavailable.

He has had to rely on a mix of inexperience, with eight members of Ghana’s Under 20 World Cup winning squad called up for senior duty, and established players like Annan and Asamoah Gyan.

Nigeria set up a date with Ghana with a 5-4 penalty shoot out win over Zambia after a goalless stalemate in their quarter-final in Lubango on Tuesday.


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