They see us as underdogs but we will prove them wrong – Andre Dede Ayew

3 min read
They see us as underdogs but we will prove them wrong - Andre Dede Ayew

Andre Ayew, the captain of the Black Stars, has expressed a realistic view about Ghana’s chances in the upcoming Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) tournament. Ayew acknowledges that the Black Stars are no longer considered among the favorites to win the tournament and believes it’s time for Ghanaians to accept this reality.

Ghana, a four-time African champion, last clinched the AFCON title in 1982, and it has been 42 years since they lifted the trophy. Despite coming close in 1992, 2010, and 2015, finishing as runners-up, the team faced disappointment in the last edition of the AFCON in Cameroon, exiting the tournament at the group stage with just a single point.

As the Black Stars prepare for their first game in the 2023 AFCON against Cape Verde, Captain Andre Ayew, in his role as skipper, has urged Ghanaians to acknowledge that the team is currently not among the heavyweights of African football.

“We gave everything we had in the World Cup [in Qatar]. We’re working really hard and prepared for Cape Verde,” Ayew shared with the press. “We used to be favorites, but now we’re not part of the favorites. We need to accept it and work hard.”

Ayew’s candid acknowledgment of the team’s changed status demonstrates a sense of realism and a commitment to facing the challenges ahead with honesty. The captain emphasizes the hard work the team has been putting in and the preparation for their opening match against Cape Verde.

Despite the quality of players in the Ghanaian squad, Ayew recognizes that, in terms of favoritism, the Black Stars are not considered at the forefront for the 34th edition of the AFCON. However, Ayew sees this as an opportunity for the team.

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“We’ve seen a lot of teams who were not expected to win the AFCON, and they won it. We’ve seen teams expected to win it,” Ayew remarked. “AFCON is unpredictable, and that’s an open door we need to slide in. We will give our best.”

Ayew’s perspective on the unpredictability of the AFCON aligns with the tournament’s history, where underdogs have emerged victorious against the odds. The captain’s positive outlook and commitment to giving their best suggest a resilient team ready to face the competition with determination.

As Ghana embarks on its campaign in Ivory Coast, starting with the match against Cape Verde on Sunday, January 14, Ayew’s leadership will play a crucial role. The captain’s call for acceptance of the team’s current standing and the acknowledgment of the hard work being put in sets the tone for a focused and dedicated approach.

The AFCON journey for Ghana includes subsequent matches against Egypt and Mozambique in the group stage. While Ayew recognizes the challenges, his belief in the team’s ability to slide through the open door of unpredictability instills hope and optimism among fans.

In conclusion, Andre Ayew’s realistic assessment of Ghana’s status in the AFCON sets the stage for a humble yet determined approach to the tournament. The acknowledgment of the team’s changed standing, coupled with the emphasis on hard work and preparation, reflects a captain leading with transparency and commitment. As the Black Stars venture into the 2023 AFCON, they do so with an understanding of the competition’s unpredictability and a collective resolve to give their best, embracing the opportunity to rewrite their footballing story.

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