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2022 WCQ: The 8 new names in Ghana’s squad to face Nigeria

Black Stars

Black Stars interim coach, Otto Addo, has officially submitted his list of players to the Black Stars Management Committee ahead of the official naming of the squad for the crucial double header against Nigeria in the 2022 World Cup qualifying play-off.

Citi Sports has learned that several young players have been named in the squad, many of whom are getting a call up for the first time.

Former Ghana U-23 midfielder Osman Bukari of French Ligue 1 side Nantes, and Bristol City striker Antoine Semenyo who has been on fire in the English Championship, have both been included.

Semenyo, 22, who was born in London to Ghanaian parents was approached by Otto Addo and some Ghana FA officials before he agreed to play for the country of his parents.

He won the EFL Championship Player of the Month award for January 2022 after scoring three goals and providing three assists.

Dutch-born defender of Ghanaian descent Leeroy Owusu, who was born to Ghanaian parents in England has also been called.

Owusu moved to Netherlands at a younger age and has previously represented Netherlands at the youth level. However, after making 23 league appearances for Willem II in Dutch Eredivisie this season, Ghana FA has succeeded in his national switch with FIFA.

AS Roma’s Felix Afena-Gyan, who missed the Africa Cup of Nations, will finally have another opportunity to represent his country after he was also included in the list.

Southampton’s Mohammed Salisu has also reportedly agreed to play for Ghana, but his availability is dependent on his recovery from a hamstring injury he suffered last week.

Also, Orlando Pirates goalkeeper Richard Ofori has been named as part of the three goalkeepers to face Nigeria. The shot-stopper recently recovered from an injury he sustained against South Africa last year which eventually led to his absence from the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations.

He will fight for the number one spot with Jojo Wollacott and Hearts of Oak’s Richard Attah.

Anderlecht star, Majeed Ashimeru, will also be rewarded for his recent good form after he was also included.

Hearts of Oak defender Dennis Korsah, who recently joined the Phobians from Ebusua Dwarfs, has been put on standby.

Last week, reports emerged that Otto Addo had dropped seven players who were part of the Black Stars squad that participated in 2021 Africa Cup of Nations ahead of 2022 Fifa World Cup playoffs against Nigeria later this year and Kamaldeen’s injury could become a major worry.

Notable among the names dropped include Andre Ayew and box-to-box midfielder Wakaso Mubarak who could not kick a ball at the Afcon due to injury concerns.

Ayew, in particular, has been dropped because of suspension as he picked a red card against Comoros in the final game of the group stage at the Afcon.

Also, former Dreams FC player Philemon Baffour who has constantly been chastised by Ghanaians for his inclusion in the Black Stars has finally been dropped alongside RTU midfielder David Abagna Sandan.

Also, Yeni Malatyspor striker Benjamin Tetteh has been dropped following his ban by CAF after he was captured on camera for hitting a Gabonese player at the Afcon.

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