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Tuesday, October 26, 2021

2022 WCQ: Jordan Ayew tipped to find rhythm against Zimbabwe

Jordan Ayew

Ludogorets forward, Bernard Tekpetey, is backing Crystal Palace striker Jordan Ayew to find his scoring boots when Ghana faces Zimbabwe in the 2022 World Cup qualifiers.

The Black Stars are set to host The Warriors in Cape Coast in a Group C matchday three fixture on Saturday, three days before travelling for the reverse encounter in Harare.

Ayew has come under scrutiny in recent times for his struggles in front of goal, particularly at club level where he has failed to score in over 30 games.

“Jordan [Ayew] is a good player. He’s a top player in Europe and Africa,” former Schalke 04 attacker Tekpetey, who played together with the former Swansea City man at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations tournament, told Goal.

“Sometimes you play against a team, they hear the name and realise they have to pay attention to him.

“With this new coach, I hope Jordan can get his rhythm and play with his quality and come up with some goals to help the nation as well.”

On Saturday, the Black Stars will be playing under new coach Milovan Rajevac, who has replaced CK Akonnor after the team’s uninspiring start to the World Cup qualifying campaign.

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The Serbian is not new to Ghana, having had a first spell where he led the Stars to the final of the 2009 African Nations Championship, the final of Afcon 2010 and the quarter-final of the 2010 World Cup.

“I have not played under him [Rajevac] before but if you look at what he has done, taking the nation to the World Cup and others, you could say he’s a top coach,” Tekpetey remarked.

“For his first game, it’s not going to be easy. What he needs is the nation, fans and everybody’s support to be able to achieve his goals. The nation wants to get to a certain level and qualify for the World Cup so it’s a very big task for him.

“He’s a new coach and has different tactics and system he wants to play. I wish him well in this first game and hope that he can prove himself to Ghanaians in his second coming as well.”

Ghana began the qualifying campaign with a 1-0 home win over Ethiopia before falling 1-0 away to South Africa.

The results have left the four-time African champions second on the table ahead of the October round of games.

“The previous games were handled by a different coach, which was CK Akonnor, and now we have a new coach,” said Tekpetey.

“The main target is to qualify for the World Cup and I think that there’s still a huge chance we can qualify, looking at the quality of players we have in camp at the moment.

“They have to listen to the advice of the coach on the pitch tactically. The individual players also have to bring out their quality as well to show a good performance.”

Ghana has qualified for the World Cup on three previous occasions but missed out on the last edition in Russia in 2018.

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