Women’s AFCON: Hayford, Okyere in bullish mood ahead of Mali clash

Sports News of Monday, 19 November 2018

Source: Goal.com

2018-11-19

The Black Queens beat Algeria 1-0 on Saturday

Ghana coach Bashir Hayford says the Black Queens are in high spirits to pick their second group win of the ongoing Africa Women Cup of Nations against Mali on Tuesday.

The hosts are determined to seal early qualification to the next round with three points in Accra following a 1-0 triumph over Algeria in their opener on Saturday.

Mali, meanwhile, fell 2-1 to Cameroon on matchday one.

“The morale in camp is very high,” Hayford said at the pre-match press conference on Monday.

“The players realise the importance of the second match and they are all meditating on how to battle their opponents and get a victory.

“The players saw the match between Mali and Cameroon and I think it is not beyond the ladies.

“They are prepared to fight for the win and there are no problems at all.”

Midfielder Priscilla Okyere said the team is in a better shape after wasting a series of scoring chances in the first game.

“We’ve overcome the pressure on us,” said the Serbian-based attacker.

“Ghanaians were expecting so much from us in the first game and it got us too eager to score.

“We are very appreciative of this support and I’m sure we will do better in the next game.”

Mali coach Mohammed Saloum Houssein, meanwhile, is not in any way lost on the difficulty of the task ahead.

Les Aiglonnes are not just about to play the hosts, but more, a defeat could send them packing.

“The assignment before us is Ghana but it is not easy to play the host nation whom everyone expects to qualify from the group,” said, the boss.

“But we can’t afford to slip up the second time.

“Our defence wasn’t strong the last time but we’ve corrected our mistakes.

“I’m sure you’ll all see an improvement in that department.”

Mali and Ghana have already met three times at the Awcon, with all the past encounters going in favour of the Black Queens.

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