The Ghanaian gaffer says the absence of some key players partly contributed to the Black Stars 1-0 loss to Sudan in the 2021 African Cup of Nations qualifying fixture on Tuesday.
Mohammed Abdul Rahman’s 90th-minute strike was enough to give Sudan a late 1-0 victory of Ghana’s Black Stars in the 2021 African Cup of Nations qualifiers fourth-round clash on Tuesday afternoon.
The Black Stars had beaten Sudan 2-0 last Thursday at the Cape Coast Stadium, thanks to captain Andre Ayew’s brace on the day.
A win for the Black Stars today would sealed qualification for the team to the 2021 AFCON but failed to even pick a point in the game.
”I think in all we did well, we lost to a team that showed more hunger than us not because we didn’t want to do anything that we wanted to win,” Akonnor said after the game.
He added that: ”Of course, we wanted to win but if I look at the way we played in Ghana and the way we played here I feel there is a bit of improvement in terms of containing pressure and all that.
”Of course, also the way we prepared before these two assignments was not an easy one at all, at the end we hand the necessary guys we need, those we need on board, they did their part but unfortunately, their best wasn’t enough for us to carry the day.
Despite losing to Sudan, Akonnor insists Ghana will still book qualification to the 2021 African Cup of Nations tournament in Cameroon.
”We played without many key players likes oof the captain, Kudus and other people so looking at all this I strongly believe that we did well. What I can say is that we learn from this mistake, from the mistakes we’ve made and of course in March we have two matches coming on and I strongly believe and can assure any Ghanaian that we will do our best to qualify for the Afcon.” added the former Black Stars captain.
With two games left in the qualifiers, Akonnor’s side can’t afford to drop points. Any defeat will mean that Sudan [on 6] points will have a chance of qualifying for the AFCON if the team is able to win its remaining matches.
Meanwhile, South Africa already has 9 points and a further defeat for the Black Stars will see the Bafana Bafana leapfrogging them on the Group C standings.