Sports

Be mindful of Uruguay threat …Fans caution Black Stars

Ahead of the Black Stars crucial game against Uruguay today, the team has been urged by local football fans tobe mindful of the threat ofUruguay in order to avoid defeat.

The Black Stars need a win or a draw to gain qualification to the Round of 16 stage of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar, but the Uruguayans need a win at all cost, as they boast of just a point after drawing their opener against South Korea and lost their second group match to Portugal.

Ghana however, recorded three points from theirthrilling 3-2 win against South Korea.

The game between the two football power-houses will be the second since the defeat suffered by the Black Stars in a penalty shootout session at the quarter finals stage of the South Africa edition of the World Cup in 2010.

That game went into shoot-outs after Uruguayan striker, Luis Suarez infamously volleyed out a Ghana goal-bound strike that could have handed Ghana and Africa a first World Cup semi-final berth.

Sampling views of soccer fans yesterday ahead of today’s game at 3pm local time, fans appeared divided over whether the team should focus on avenging the painful defeat in 2010 or see the clash as a new opportunity to correct the wrongs of the past.

A few believes that having vengeance in mind could unnecessarily put the team under pressure but others felt that it was rather important to be wary of the threat the Uruguayan wield.

A car dealer at Mallam, Mr Ernest Addae, explained to the Times Sports that going into the game with a mentality of getting a revenge over Uruguay may cause the team to be indiscipline as the players may overly be aggressive.

A student of the Ebenezer Senior High School, Frank Amankwah,noted that it would not be appropriate for the Black Stars to go into the game with vengeance in mind because many of the players who featured in the defeat against Uruguay are not part of the team currently.

“I know the defeat against Uruguay in South Africa in 2010 was painful but we have to bear in mind that 90 percent of the players that featured in that game are not part of the current team,”Mr Amankwah said.

Mrs Charity Lamptey, a trader at the Kaneshie Market noted that the Uruguayans would be coming into the game as wounded lions, hence, was important for the Black Stars to be aware of that.

On the contrary, a driver at the Neoplan Station, Mr Michael Armah,indicated that it was a perfect opportunity for the Black Stars to take revenge against Uruguay as he still harbours the pain he went through that night after the game in South Africa.

“For me, it is a great opportunity for the Black Stars to getrevenge against Uruguay for the pain theycaused usin 2010. I must confess that it took me like a month to get over that defeat”, Mr Armah noted.

Ms Florence Adjei, a student of the Valley View University said “one player I will like the team to go in hard on is Luis Suarez because of how he prevented the Black Stars from making it into the semi-finals of the World Cup in 2010.”

Another person said “when I hear Uruguay, the name that comes to mind is Luis Suarez. I really hate that guy even though he played for the team I support which is FC Barcelona and was a legend there.”

The Black Stars is yet to record a win against any South American side at the tournament having lost to Uruguay and Brazil, who would be the likely opponents when the team qualifies for the Round of 16 stage.

BY BENJAMIN ARCTON-TETTEY & JESSEL LARTEY THERSON-COFIE

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