Friday, June 23, 2006


Coach Ratomir Dujkovic thinks his side's qualification for the World Cup knockout stages heralds the start of a new era for football in Ghana. The World Cup debutants clinched their place in the second round with a 2-1 victory over the United States. Dujkovic said: "This is a historic moment for us, we are very happy. "This is a starting point for all Ghanaians, for this group of players and myself. The first time in the World Cup and we come in the world's top 16."

Highlights: Ghana 2-1 USA

He added: "We didn't play as we usually do but USA are a hard-working team. We are not afraid of any team. We are Africa's Brazil - Stephen Appiah. "They pushed us hard all the time so we're very satisfied and very happy."

Ghana will now meet Brazil in the second round, but will be without their influential midfielder Michael Essien who is suspended after picking up his second yellow card. But the Chelsea star is hoping that his country can knock out the tournament favourites. He said: "We did our best today. We did it for Ghana and the whole of Africa so they should keep cheering us." And Stephen Appiah echoed his team-mates' confidence. He said: "We are representing the whole continent of Africa and that's great. We are not afraid of any team. We are Africa's Brazil."


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