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Ghana face Chile without Gyan and Ayews
Published : 28 Feb 2012 11:46:58
Ghana must do without Asamoah Gyan and Andre and Jordan Ayew when they tackle Chile on Wednesday in a friendly hosted by American city Philadelphia.
Gyan, on loan from Sunderland to United Arab Emirates club Al Ain, has gone into temporary retirement to cope with the trauma of a second crucial penalty miss in a major tournament.
His spot-kick against Zambia in the Africa Cup of Nations semi-finals this month was saved and many supporters blamed the striker after the Black Stars suffered a shock defeat.
Gyan also fluffed a penalty in the 2010 World Cup quarter-final against Uruguay in Johannesburg, with the ball going over the crossbar in the dying seconds of extra time and Ghana losing the subsequent shootout.
It was a heartbreaking moment for the 26-year-old as Ghana were set to become the first African team to reach the World Cup semi-finals, and in the first edition of the tournament staged on the continent.
Marseille withdrew the Ayew brothers, who are sons of three-time African Footballer of the Year Abedi 'Pele' Ayew, saying they were injured during the 1-0 French Ligue 1 loss at Brest at the weekend.
Ghana coach Goran Stevanovic cannot afford a third consecutive loss, after the defeat by Zambia and then a loss to Mali in the Cup of Nations third place play-off, as he battles to keep his job.
A decision on whether he stays is expected next week with football officials reportedly split over the Serb, who vowed to bring the Cup of Nations back to Accra after a 30-year absence when he assumed control last year.
Stevanovic, who claimed in a post-tournament report that some of his players used witchcraft against team-mates, has given first call-ups to midfielder Afriyie Acquah and strikers Emmanuel Baffoe and Richard Mpong.
Senegal have axed 14 of the squad that made a stunning first-round exit from the Cup of Nations -- including captain Mamadou Niang and fellow strikers Demba Ba and Moussa Sow -- for a game against South Africa in Indian Ocean city Durban.
Edward Manqele, a striker with unfashionable mid-table club Free State Stars and third highest national league scorer with eight goals, has been called up by goal-shy Bafana Bafana (The Boys).
Ivory Coast, runners-up to Zambia in the Cup of Nations, play Guinea in Abidjan, Morocco face Burkina Faso in Rabat, Tunisia meet Peru in Rades and Egypt tackle Niger in the Qatari capital Doha in the week's other friendly fixtures.