Special Report from Kwabena Kyere Stugard in Plataeu, Abidjan.
Ghana Black Satellites chances of qualifying to Benin 2005 has received a major boost ahead of the crucial decider against Cote Divoire on sunday, with the arrival of the minister of state in charge of Education, Youth and Sports, Alhaji Rashid Bawa.
The minister, in the company of an official from Ghana Embassy in Abidjan arrived at the training grounds on saturday around 4.35pm when coach Oti Akenten was busily putting finishing touches on his attacking machinery.
Addressing the players, Hon. Bawa asked the players to die a little hard for mother Ghana. He said president John Agyekum had sent him here to remind the players that the entire nation has absolute confidence in the team and would want to hear good news from Abidjan. "His Excellency J. A. Kuffour would travel to the northern part of Ghana on sunday and would want to hear good news by 6.00pm", he stressed.
He told the playing body to emulate the Black Stars team that travelled all the way to Younde to beat Cameroun 3-1 at their own backyard. Again, he recalled how England defied all odds and humilliated Germany 5-1 in the 2002 world cup qualifier in Munich.
On his part, the skipper of the side, Micheal Kafui Helegbe thanked the minister for his timely visit and promised on behalf of his colleagues that they would beat the Young Elephants to qualify for the next African Youth Championship scheduled for Benin between 16th February and 9th March 2005. In all, seven winners qualify alongside the host nation, Benin.
Kick-off time is at 4.00pm local time (the same time in Ghana)
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