AFCON 2023 Qualifiers: Ghana’s Hughton admits uphill task after Madagascar draw

AFCON 2023 Qualifiers: Ghana’s Hughton admits uphill task after Madagascar draw

Ghana coach Chris Hughton expressed his disappointment after their goalless draw with Madagascar delayed their quest to qualify for the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations.

The Black Stars needed a win in Madgascar to secure their spot in the Ivory Coast but they were fustrated to a goalless draw and now need a to overcome Central African Republic’s hurdle in their final qualifying fixture.

Hughton lamented about the pitch in Antananarivo for the draw as the Black Stars could not convert the nine shots they had in the game.

The former Newcastle United and Brighton coach said: “Yes we are very disappointed. We came with an attitude and mindset to win but to win a football match you need to score goals. We found it difficult today.

“The pitch is difficult, it’s an uneven pitch but it’s the same for both teams and we needed to be forceful in the key areas to create more opportunities to score so the fact that we didn’t score is the most disappointing thing.”

Despite the shared spoils, Ghana still sit atop of Group E with nine points from five matches – two points ahead of their next opponents, Central African Republic who are third in the table with seven points.

Hughton has admitted the next game in September would be difficult for the Black Stars but it is a must-win as well.

The former Newcastle United and Brighton coach continued: “Our strategy for the next match is to win. We are playing at home. We know we have to get the result and obviously it’s a game we know the consequences if we don’t win.

“From here, we have a break. The players will have to go back to their clubs and they will start preseason and we will be ready for the game in September. We have some players missing today so hopefully those players will be available in September.

“We will be going into another difficult game against Central African Republic and we have to win.”

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