Walia Ibex Out To Dim Black Stars
Ethiopia men’s national football team, Walia Ibex, lay in wait for the Black Stars of Ghana in a 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifier at Orlando Stadium in Johannesburg on Thursday.
The match will be played in unfamiliar venue as Ethiopia currently doesn’t have a stadium that fulfills the required standards set by the Confederation of African Football and FIFA to host international matches.
Ahead of the clash, Ghana need a win to boost their chances of reaching the global tournament in Qatar next year, as any slip up could end their chances of challenging for the sole ticket in the group to advance to the final round of qualification.
Coach Milovan Rajevac wants a disciplined approach to consolidate their chances of making to the next round of the competition.
The match is important for the West Africans who are second in Group G with nine points, trailing leaders South Africa by just one point.
“I believe the people from AS Roma and [Jose] Mourinho is a famous coach, he’s known for his accomplishments in his career, [and] if they are assured to give him a chance, [then] we also believe he is good for the Black Stars],” Rajevac explained.
“For example, [in their] last match, he played against AC Milan and came on in the second half, and if they think [he’s good for opportunities, then we believe too].
“He’s a young player and he definitely has prospects and by his performance, he is a promising talent. So why shouldn’t we be assured [about him]?”
Fresh from back-to-back wins against Zimbabwe last month, the Black Stars are motivated to play in a neutral venue in Johannesburg.
Shifting focus to the hosts, the Walia Ibex are also out to cause an upset and keep the group open as they seek a win.
Ethiopia sit at third on the table with three point from one win and three losses, with Zimbabwe at the bottom with one point.
Fresh from a 1-0 defeat at the hands of South Africa away, the East Africans have their pride to salvage come Thursday in Johannesburg.
Both teams have met in five matches since 1963 with Ghana claiming four wins compared to one for the Ethiopia, with zero games drawn.
Ethiopia and Ghana met in group opener back two months ago when the Black Stars claimed a 1-0 home win in Cape Coast thanks to a goal from midfielder Mubarak Wakaso.