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2021 AFCON qualifiers: Andre Ayew admits pressure on Black Stars to defeat South Africa

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Andre and Jordan Ayew celebrate win over West Ham United

Ghana captain Andre Ayew says there is pressure on the Black Stars to win over South Africa in Thursday’s 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier.

The Black Stars are under intense scrutiny of their fans after the team disastrously bombed out of Africa’s flagship football competition in Egypt in June.

A new initiative in underway to ensure that the home supporters get behind the team when they host the Bafana Bafana in Cape Coast.

South Africa performed better than the four-time African champions at the tournament in Egypt in June and they are likely to pose a serious threat to the Black Stars.

Ayew says it is the responsibility of the Black Stars to overcome the pressure of getting a good result to make the fans happy.

“There is always a responsibility on us to make sure we make our country proud. We accept this responsibility. We won’t always get it right but we are determined to be up there again,” Ayew said at the pre-match press conference on Thursday.

Ghana is paired in the same qualifying group with South Africa, Sudan and Sao Tome and Principe.

After Thursday’s game against South Africa, the Black Stars will travel to face Sao Tome and Principe in the second group game on Monday.

The Black Stars started their preparations on Monday evening before travelling to the coastal city of Cape Coast on Tuesday where the qualifying match will be played.

South Africa arrived in Ghana on Monday night to ensure early preparations for Thursday’s 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier.

Bafana Bafana were originally scheduled to arrive in the Ghanaian capital on Tuesday but changed their plans to ensure early acclimatization.

This means they will have two days of preparations in Ghana before they take on the Black Stars to ensure they can give off their best in the game.

Ghana and South Africa met in June part of preparations for this year’s Afcon, with the game ending 0-0 in the United Arab Emirates.

The last official match between the two sides was the qualifying campaign was for the 2006 Fifa World Cup where the Black Stars emerged top of the group.

Ghana recorded back-to-back wins over Bafana Bafana to qualify for their maiden World Cup appearance.

However Bafana Bafana have seen some revival for the past two years culminating in some good showing at the recent Africa Cup of Nations tournament in Egypt.

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