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Sunday warns Black Stars

By The Statesman

Alhaji Ibrahim Sunday, head coach of the MTN Soccer Academy and newly promoted Premiership side Zaytuna United, has cautioned the Black Stars to try as much as possible to aoid avoid late injuries before the African Cup of Nations kick off on January 20, 2008.

Speaking to The Statesports in an exclusive interview in Accra on Monday, the former Kumasi Asante Kotoko star who won the African Best Footballer Award in 1970 and also handled coached the Porcupine Warriors to win the African Clubs Championship, appealed to Ghanaians to offer their full support for the Stars to win the continental tournament.

"The Cup that was last won in 1982 and as one of the giants of African football, Ghana deserves to equal Egypt's fifth time record. We won it four times before Cameroon got their first trophy but they have now equaled our four-time achievement”, he said.

Coach Sunday, therefore, advised the Stars technical handlers to adequately prepare the players in better environment so as to present the best team for Ghana 2008.

He also appealed to the handlers to motivate the players by offering them the best technical training in a first class gymnasium outside the country. “The coach must select players who will be willing to die a little for the nation”.

The veteran coach noted that “the African Cup is a very prestigious tournament for Africa and African footballers, hence the need for the Stars to inscribe their names in the golden books of African Football”.

On publicity aspect of the tournament, coach Sunday conceded that there was not much hype like posters and flyers around, but most Ghanaians were aware of the Ghana 2008. He, however, appealed to the media to help publicise the historic event.

He urged the Local Organising Committee to work around the clock and ensure a successful tournament.