A Liberia-based Ghanaian coach, Samuel Quaye, has said the Black Stars, would have to put in a lot more energy in their next Group C game against Gabon.
“Our boys lacked the needed energy and concentration and against a solid side like Morocco, you’ll get punished with the little mistake you make,” he said.
The Stars slumped 0-1 to the Atlas of Morocco in their opening game of the ongoing African Cup of Nations in Cameroon on Monday.
An 83rd-minute Sofiane Boufal strike earned all three points for the Moroccans, condemning the Stars to the bottom of the log.
Coach Quaye, who handles premier league outfit, Liberian International Shipping and Corporate Registry (LISCR FC), also wondered why it took the Ghana trainer – Milovan Rajevac, that long to make changes “when it was evident his charges were not on top of affairs in the second half, especially.”
He also criticised the team’s 4-3-3 formation, which according to him, is alien to Ghana’s traditional system.
“Our players are used to the 4-4-2 formation; so let’s find a way of returning to it. The present 4-3-3 style, most often than not, has seen our players retreating unnecessarily – one of which caused the goal.
“Years back, we (Ghana) used the 4-2-4 formation that saw us lift two Nations Cup in 1963 and 1965. Later, we adopted the 4-4-2 system which also fetched us two trophies in 1978 and 1982, and we stuck to it until recently.”
The Liberia-domiciled Ghanaian caoach, who once handled local sides Great Olympics, Kwaebibirem FC and Togo elite team Maranatha de Fiokpo, also reprimanded the Ghana defence for its loose marking which allowed Morocco to score.
“In matches of this nature, you don’t do shadow marking. Not at all. The defending must be tight whilst also ensuring effective communication with the goalkeeper,” he added.
Coach Quaye was, however, hopeful that the Stars were going to qualify for the next stage of the campaign, as they now have their destiny in their own hands.
“Usually, Ghanaians are slow starters in tournaments; so I expect them to come to the party in subsequent games.”
The Stars take on Gabon in their second game on Friday in what is tagged a must-win affair for the Ghanaians.
“It would be an understatement if I say the match against Gabon is going to be difficult. Truth is that it is going to be fiercely contested, even though I strongly believe the Stars would emerge victorious with a strong performance.”
The Gabonese Panthers upstaged Comoros Islands 1-0 in the other Group C game to go joint tops with Morocco.
BY JOHN VIGAH