By James K. Attaglo Wilson
Head coach of the Black Starlets [Samuel Paa Kwesi Fabin] has refuted the claims that the Round of 16 clash between Ghana and Niger at the ongoing FIFA U-17 World Cup in India is a predetermined win for the former champions [Ghana].
The Menas [Niger] lost two friendly games against the Black Starlets and also lost to Ghana in the semi finals of the 2017 African Youth Championship in Gabon but Paa Kwesi Fabin is not underrating his opponent [Niger] going into the match:
“I think they [Niger] are a very determined side. They played an improved game in their group matches [India 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup] as compared to what we witnessed at the African Youth Championship so it wouldn’t be that easy but we are prepared to sail over them.”
“We are ready for the battle because this is a knockout stage. We have psyched the boys ahead of the match and they are prepared to go an extra length to making sure that we journey on,” he adds.
Coach Paa Kwesi Fabin, however, believes that the match will not travel beyond the 90 minutes regulation time as it did at the African U-17 championship where Ghana won via the penalty shootouts.
Ghana topped the Group A table with 6 points whiles Niger qualified as one of the best third placed teams in the competition, having come third in Group E behind Brazil and Spain with just 3 points.
Saddick Ibrahim has been ruled out ahead of the game, but coach Paa Kwesi Fabin believes that he has worthy replacement who are capable to stand in for the injured defender.
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