Ghana will chase a second successive win in Group A at the 2017 WAFU Cup of Nations when they face Mali at Cape Coast Sports Stadium on Saturday evening.
The tournament hosts got their second round off to a perfect start when they defeated Guinea 2-0 on Thursday. Second-half goals from Stephen Sarfo and Razak Patrick took the Black Stars to three points and the top spot in the standings.
“The tension, the pressure, the atmosphere was quite different in the first game than this one,” Black Stars coach Maxwell Konadu said at the post-match conference.
“This time around the boys were relaxed and we were able to calm them down enough before the kickoff and I think that also contributed to the performance this afternoon.”
Mali, meanwhile, got their Group A campaign off to a solid if unspectacular start by holding Nigeria to a goalless draw in Thursday’s early game. The ‘Battle of the Eagles’ was a closely-fought affair and coach Nouhoum Diane will feel his side is ready for the challenge offered by Ghana.
Ghana and Mali have met in 17 previous matches, according to FIFA statistics. The Black Stars have claimed eight wins – compared to just three for the Eagles – and outscored their opponents 28 goals to 14 in the process.