Sports News of Wednesday, 22 February 2017
Ghana attacker Andre Ayew has shed light on the Black Stars’ disappointing showing at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon.
The 27-year-old, who had fitness concerns last year following a thigh injury for new club West Ham United, netted twice at the tournament, but his goals were unable to propel the Black Stars to glory.
Avram Grant’s men lost 2-0 to Cameroon in the semi-finals, before succumbing to a 1-0 defeat to Burkina Faso in the third-place playoff.
“We weren’t really pleased with the progress because when you’re Ghana, you are there to win the tournament and we have a good squad with good players,” Ayew said, as reported by his club’s official website.
“We could have done better, but we gave our best and that wasn’t enough.
“It was a good tournament and especially for me, coming back from a long injury. I wasn’t sure that I would be able to go to the tournament, which is very important for me and my country.
“So it was pleasing because I was able to do that and get some minutes and play all the games and get fitter and finish the tournament with no injury.
“Hopefully I can use this to start a better year with West Ham.”
Ayew netted the only goal in the win over Uganda in the group opener, before adding his second against DR Congo in the last eight.
“I scored in the first game, scored in the quarters, so two goals, two penalties, it’s not bad,” he said.
“I know I could have done better but due to my injuries, I felt better as the games went on. I can use that to do a better performance here.”
Ghana now have to wait until Cameroon 2019 to make another attempt to lift the continental title.
Their last of four triumphs came in Libya in 1982.