World Cup: Black Stars probable lineup against Uruguay
Ghana has a must win encounter against Uruguay after putting its campaign back on track with a win against South Korea on Monday. Otto Addo made a few changes to the starting XI for the match against the Asians from the one that started against Portugal. Jordan Ayew, Gideon Mensah and Tariq Lamptey came in as Baba Rahman, Alidu Seidu and Alexander Djiku dropped to the bench. Today’s match is as important as the one against South Korea and will Otto Addo effect any changes?
We provide in-depth explanation of who the starting XI would be and why each of them deserves a place in lineup.
Goalkeeper: Lawrence Ati-Zigi
Ati-Zigi has made supporters of the team forgot that Jojo Wollacott was the team’s first choice. He showed good reflexes against South Korea and kept Ghana in the game on a number of occasions. He will be anxious to claim his first clean sheet and will be extra motivated knowing that a good result today will mean he will have a chance to be in the when Ghana makes it out of the group.
Left-back: Gideon Mensah
Gideon Mensah got his chance against South Korea as Baba Rahman was relegated to the bench and he did well to deserve a place in today’s match. He went off late with an injury which we presumed was more of a precautionary act rather than a serious one. He will thus be given the chance to go again against Uruguay with his crosses very vital as one resulted in Ghana’s third goal against South Korea.
Right-back: Tariq Lamptey
Tariq Lamptey got the nod to start against South Korea and he did well but his overconfidence when Ghana was leading costed the team the equalizers. He will be trusted to go on from the start to use his speed to cause havoc in attack and as well deal with threats from the wide areas. He was all over the defensive area blocking shots in the first half as South Korea pilled pressure on the West Africans and would be expected to even go a step further against Uruguay.
Centre-backs: Salisu Mohammed
Salisu has been praised by fans for his display in the two matches so far and his goal against South Korea was vital. He has shown his goal threat in the last three matches he has played for Ghana and will be expected to also improve on his dealings with aerial duels. So his partnership with Amartey continues. Djiku may join them later when Ghana has the lead and need to defend in the last few minutes of the match.
Centre-backs: Daniel Amartey
Daniel Amartey has been a constant presence in the defensive set up since the start of the tournament and remains one of the most experienced and trusted lieutenants in that area. His relationship with Southampton’s Salisu Mohammed has been excellent thought they have conceded in each of the matches they have started together. He will be eager to keep his first clean sheet and that will be achievable if he together with his colleagues can improve their alertness to aerial balls and to gag options coming in from the wide areas.
Central midfield: Salis Abdul Samed
Salis has slotted seamlessly into the Black Stars fold and has discharged himself well so far. He will continue his fine partnership with Thomas Partey against Uruguay but would be expected to up his level against the hungry South Americans who would leave no chances in trying to get the win.
Central midfield: Thomas Partey
Thomas Partey has been criticised by fans for been anonymous in the last two games. They expected to see the man who dictates play in the Arsenal midfield in the Black Stars jersey but saw a little less. Some fans even joked that he should be allowed to wear the Arsenal jersey to play for Ghana. He will keep his place alongside his partner, Salis Abdul Samed as the Black Stars will seek to limit the Uruguayans influence in the middle of the park.
Attacking midfield: Andre Ayew
Andre Ayew could not match is own standards set in the Portugal game but he nonetheless was very vital in organizing play and tracking back to support defensively. Though he offered little going forward against South Korea, we expect him to bring his A-game on this afternoon in the must win encounter.
Right-winger: Jordan Ayew
Jordan Ayew silenced his critics and also proved why he has always been every coach’s preferred player despite his lack of goals. He was very instrumental in sending in key crosses and helping with defence. Aside from his two goal contributions, he discharged himself well and deservedly got a standing ovation from the fans when he was subbed off.
Left-winger: Kudus Mohammed
Kudus stood up when it mattered most and scored the two crucial goals to helped Ghana earned the win. His chemistry with Jordan Ayew was perfect on the day against the Asians and he has so far proved to be Ghana’s key man at the tournament will keep his place.
Striker: Inaki Williams
Inaki Williams has fired blank in two matches at the tournament so far and that included a glaring mistimed strike which he has Mohammed Kudus to thank for converting what became the winner for Ghana against South Korea. We, however, expect Otto Addo to keep faith with the Athletic Bilbao forward for his experience and personality against the South Americans. He will, however, not last the entire duration of the match as Antoine Semenyo is expected to get his first outing at the tournament today.