Sports News of Sat, 30 Sep 20170

Columbus Crew release Afful, Mensah for two Ghana matches

American top-flight side Columbus Crew SC have announced that two players have received international call-ups: Harrison Afful and Jonathan Mensah.

Ghana is set to play a 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying match against Uganda and an international friendly against Saudi Arabia.

The 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying match against Uganda will take place on October 7 in Uganda.

Ghana’s international friendly against Saudi Arabia will take place on October 10 in Saudi Arabia.

Ghana is currently in Group E of the CAF Final Group Stage qualification for the 2018 FIFA World Cup along with Egypt, Uganda and Congo.

The winner of each group automatically qualifies to the 2018 FIFA World Cup to be held in Russia. Ghana has qualified for each of the last three FIFA World Cup tournaments.

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The Black Stars are set to travel to Uganda on October 7, with the match marking Ghana’s fifth match of the final group stage of qualification.

Ghana is currently in third place of Group E with a record of 1-2-1.

The Black Stars then travel to Saudi Arabia for an international friendly against Saudi Arabia on October 10.

Including Afful and Mensah, Crew SC’s current roster features 11 players that have received a senior National Team call-up throughout their careers: Mohammed Abu, Waylon Francis, Ola Kamara, Cristian Martinez, Justin Meram, Jukka Raitala, Rodrigo Saravia, Zack Steffen and Wil Trapp.

Afful has earned 75 caps for Ghana, the most recent of which came on September 5 of this year against Congo in a 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying match.

He is a two-time World Cup veteran, having been a member of Ghana’s roster during the 2010 and 2014 editions of the tournament.

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Afful was also a member of the Ghana National Team during the last four editions of the Africa Cup of Nations, playing every minute of the 2013, 2015 and 2017 tournaments.

This season, he has made 21 regular-season appearances (18 starts) and has recorded one assist for Crew SC.

Mensah has represented the Black Stars on 56 occasions, with his last match coming against Congo in a 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying match on September 5 of this year.

He has participated in the 2010 FIFA World Cup, the 2014 FIFA World Cup, the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations, the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations, the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations and the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations.

Mensah has made 23 regular-season appearances (22 starts), while registering two goals and one assist for Crew SC this year.

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