Soccer News of Fri, 20 Jun 201441
Shake-up in Black Stars for Germany match
There is bound to be a massive shake-up in the Black Stars set-up for tomorrow’s crucial game in Fortaleza, take it or leave it.
Ghana's losing line-up and tactical formation in Monday’s group opener against USA are bound to be shuffled as the Stars look to beat fearsome Germany to rekindle hopes in Brazil.
At least, that is the signal so far picked up from the team's training in Maceio, even though, as usual, Coach Kwasi Appiah is keeping his plans close to his chest.
But sources close to the technical team, and from observations at the training, believe that the starting line-up against the Germans will see Adam Kwarasey in goal, with Samuel Inkoom (or Daniel Opare again) and Harrison Afful at the full backs or lateral defence.
At the centre of defence will be the pair of John Boye and Jonathan Mensah, with Michael Essien and Sulley Muntari in defensive midfield or centre of midfield, while Andre Ayew and Kwadwo Asamoah are deployed on the right and left sides of midfield respectively.
What this means is that both Andre Ayew and Kwadwo Asamoah have very big roles to play in this match by falling back to assist the defence laterals and also supporting the attacking line of Kevin-Prince Boateng and captain Asamoah Gyan. But the big question is the role for gifted Christian Atsu in the set-up. The silky, pint-size player with deft touches and defence-splitting skills was very impressive in the game against USA, and his replacement in the second half by Albert Adomah -- with no such gifted skills -- was one of the technical errors on the Stars side.
Should Atsu be in the starting line-up, then he may be taking up the place of one of the big guys or whatever scheme Coach Appiah will be drawing up to handle the efficient Germans in this must-win game.
The Stars need to fight for the three points and nothing less to stay afloat at the tournament and, therefore, Coach Appiah must field his best players from the start.
Against Germany, tireless and confident players, those who have little respect for the opposition and can think on their feet to make things happen will be needed.
Agyeman Badu, Mubarak Wakaso and Afriyie Acquah are all players that can come in from the bench when the going gets tougher.
It will be suicidal for the Stars to dominate tomorrow's game and yet fail to outscore their opponents, knowing that the Germans are lethal in front of goal with Thomas Mueller, already with three goals in the bag against Portugal, anxious to become the top scorer of the tournament. Even with the world's best player, Cristiano Ronaldo, performing for the Portuguese, Mueller & Co still posted four unanswered goals, a warning that the Stars need to stand firm. Expected line-up for Germany: Manuel Neuer, Benedikt Hoewedes, Mats Hummels, Jerome Boateng, Per Mertesacker, Philip Lahm (capt), Sami Khedira, Mario Goetze, Tonl Kroos, Thomas Mueller and Mezut Ozil, with Lukas podolski, Andre Schuerrle, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Miroslav Kloser as the outsiders.