Ghana begins the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations campaign against West African neighbours Benin on Tuesday evening in Ismailia.
Coach Kwesi Appiah has named his lineup to face Benin nine hours before kick-off as the Black Stars seek to start this year’s tournament on a good note.
Ghana will open their account in Egypt tonight, but how have they fared in their AFCON openers since 2000?
Kwasi Appiah relied heavily on the 4-4-2 formation during the qualifiers but he is set to switch to a 4-2-3-1 formation.
A system he tried in Black Stars last pre-tournament friendly against South Africa which ended 0-0.
Despite the team failing to score, the performance exhibited according to Joy Sports’ tournament correspondent, Benedict Owusu, who watched the game, was very impressive.
Making their debuts in the Africa Cup of Nations will be Lumor Agbeyenu, Kasim Nuhu and Thomas Agyepong.
The shock omission is vice-captain of the side Kwadwo Asamoah who was expected to play in a midfield role. The Inter Milan star was reportedly Ghana’s best player in two pre-tournament friendlies.
As expected, Maritzburg goalkeeper Richard Ofori is the first choice to start in goal.
With Harrison Afful failing to make the squad due to injury, Reading defender Andy Yiadom starts right back with Lumor Agbeyenu starting ahead of Baba Rahman.
Metz defender John Boye will partner German-based Kassim Nuhu with Mubarak Wakaso and Partey shielding the back four.
Atsu will play from his favourite right flank and Thomas Agyepong will be on duty on the opposite flank.
Skipper Andre Ayew will play behind his brother Jordan Ayew.
Ghana’s starting XI to face Benin:
Richard Ofori- Andy Yiadom, Lumor Agbeyenu, John Boye, Kasim Nuhu- Mubarak Wakaso, Thomas Partey, Thomas Agyepong, Christian Atsu, Andre Ayew-Jordan Ayew.