Portugal v Ghana: World Cup 2022 – dwell | World Cup 2022

Key occasions

Ghana: It’s troublesome to know what to anticipate from Ghana, who’re outdoors the highest 60 of Fifa’s rankings and had an unspeakably unhealthy African Cup of Nations in January, ending backside of their group with only one level, struggling the humiliation of defeat by the hands of Comoros alongside the way in which.

That disastrous displaying earned Ghana head coach Milovan Rajevac his P45 and he was changed with the previous Borussia Dortmund midfielder Otto Addo. Nonetheless employed by the Bundesliga aspect as a scout, he promptly steered Ghana by way of a World Cup play-off in opposition to Nigeria. Former Brighton supervisor Chris Hughton, former Dutch worldwide George Boateng and former Nordsjælland coach Mas Dramani are additionally a part of Ghana’s new management construction.

Portugal v Ghana beginning line-ups

Portugal: Diogo Costa, Joao Cancelo, Danilo Pereira, Ruben Dias, Raphael Guerreiro, Ruben Neves, Bernardo Silva, Bruno Fernandes, Otavio, Joao Felix, Cristiano Ronaldo.

Ghana: Lawrence Ati-Zigi, Abdul-Rahman Baba, Daniel Amartey, Alexander Djiku, Mohammed Salisu, Alidu Seidu, Thomas Partey, Salis Abdul Samed, Mohammed Kudus, Andre Ayew, Inaki Williams.

Unemployed 37 year old starts for Portugal.
Unemployed 37 12 months previous begins for Portugal. {Photograph}: Glyn Kirk/AFP/Getty Photographs

Portugal: Coach Fernando Santos says squad are as built-in as they’ve been in years regardless of the enduring cleaning soap opera. Nick Ames studies from Doha.

Interview: “That’s after I went to speak to my grandad. I advised him there was an opportunity that I may play for Ghana on the World Cup and what did he assume. He mentioned immediately that he didn’t have lengthy left to dwell and he dreamed of his grandson taking part in for Ghana. There was nothing left to consider then.” Sid Lowe discovers finds out what modified the thoughts of an initially reluctant Inaki Williams and satisfied him to declare for Ghana, the nation from which his mother and father hail and through which he was conceived.

Portugal’s supervisor speaks: “Profitable a match like that is extraordinarily troublesome for any workforce, for any nation,” mentioned Fernando Santos. “You solely want take a look at these first few video games to see that clearly. I used to be watching the Croatia-Morocco recreation simply now, and also you see very even contests.

“That’s as a result of many of the gamers are in the identical leagues. Towards Ghana, as an example, two or three of their gamers are adversaries of Bruno [Fernandes, who was sitting alongside him] in the identical championship. They play for giant groups and are used to the tactical points at play. Prior to now you’d see a distinction, however these days you don’t, particularly as all of the coaches are of a particularly excessive degree.

“We’re ready for opponents that can trigger us a number of issues. Ghana are a really nicely organised workforce. Their recreation in opposition to Switzerland confirmed that. African groups have a number of expertise, unpredictability, and are at all times bettering tactically. Immediately they’re much extra full groups.”

On the Ronaldo palaver: “Will it take away our focus?” he requested. “No, it gained’t. I haven’t even heard the gamers speak about it at any time right here, at coaching, throughout leisure time, after they’re taking part in video games comparable to desk soccer, not even Ronaldo himself. Perhaps of their rooms they activate the TV, they discuss to their households, they do what they need.

“However what’s vital is the overall focus I see in my gamers and a incredible spirit, very in tune with what they need to do, what our targets are, whereas on the similar time conscious of the difficulties that we are going to face as a result of they’ve a sensible outlook.”

Portugal boss Fernando Santos (left) and Bruno Fernandes attend yesterday’s press conference.
Portugal boss Fernando Santos (left) and Bruno Fernandes attend yesterday’s press convention. {Photograph}: Xinhua/REX/Shutterstock

Ghana’s supervisor speaks: “We’ve high quality and may compete,” mentioned Otto Addo. “We’ve to be courageous and self assured. We’ve seen in among the upsets that little issues determine the video games and we anticipate it to be the identical in opposition to Portugal.”

Requested if he thought the hoop-la surrounding Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure from Manchester United would impact right now’s recreation, Addo had this to say. ““I don’t know and to be trustworthy I don’t care. This isn’t our downside and I don’t assume it’s a giant downside. Everyone desires to win and it doesn’t matter what occurs it’s a giant stage a giant recreation on the World Cup degree. So I don’t assume usually this will disrupt anyone.”

Otto Addo (left) and Andre Ayew spoke to the press at the Qatar National Convention Center yesterday.
Otto Addo (left) and Andre Ayew spoke to the press on the Qatar Nationwide Conference Middle yesterday. {Photograph}: Ali Haider/EPA

Immediately’s match officers

  • Referee: Ismail Elfath

  • Assistant Referees: Kyle Atkins and Corey Parker

  • Fourth Official: Stéphanie Frappart

  • Video Assistant Referee: Armando Villarreal

Ismail Elfath leads today’s largely American team of match officials, in which French referee Stephanie Frappart will act as fourth official.
Ismail Elfath leads right now’s largely American workforce of match officers, through which French referee Stephanie Frappart will act as fourth official. {Photograph}: Kieran McManus/BPI/REX/Shutterstock

Early workforce information

Diogo Jota’s absence from the Portugal squad as a result of a calf harm means workforce supervisor Cristiano Ronaldo Fernando Santos is prone to begin Bernardo Silva and considered one of Joao Felix or Rafael Leao up entrance alongside His Lordship, whereas there are considerations over the health of PSG left-back Nuno Mendes.

Together with a backroom workforce that options Chris Hughton and George Boateng, Otto Addo is believed to don’t have any harm considerations and can deal his beginning XI from a full deck. He can be compelled to decide on an inexperienc ed goalkeeper after Charlton’s Jojo Wollacott and the South Africa-based Richard Ofori have been dominated out of this World Cup by way of harm. Lawrence Ati-Zigi (2), Manaf Nurudeen (2) and Danlad Ibrahim (0), Ghana’s three goalkeepers in Qatar, have simply 4 senior caps between them.

Lawrence Ati-Zigi is one of three goalkeepers in Ghana’s World Cup squad who have just four senior international caps between them.
Lawrence Ati-Zigi is considered one of three goalkeepers in Ghana’s World Cup squad who’ve simply 4 senior worldwide caps between them. {Photograph}: Laurent Gilliéron/EPA

Group H: Portugal v Ghana

Constructed from transport containers and different ins and outs, the short-term area that’s Stadium 974 performs host to right now’s Group H encounter between Portugal and Ghana. A lot as he would really like it, Cristiano Ronaldo has been dominating the headlines within the build-up to this recreation and can be beneath strain to ship within the wake of that interview with that man, an act of insubordation that resulted in him severing ties with Manchester United earlier this week. A massively self-regarding cog in a workforce brimful of abilities that usually appear cowed in his presence, it stays to be seen whether or not Ronaldo can be extra assist than hindrance as workforce embark on this World Cup marketing campaign.

In Qatar on the again of a play-off win in opposition to Nigeria, Otto Addo’s Ghana come into this match on the again of pleasant wins over Nicuragua and Switzerland, which got here within the wake of a 3-0 defeat by the hands of Brazil. There’s a suggestion that Addo doesn’t know his finest aspect, however acquired a lift in September when Brighton right-back Tariq Lamptey, who qualifies for the Black Stars by way of his father, determined to declare for Ghana.

Lamptey joins his fellow Premier League gamers Mohammad Salisu (Southampton), Daniel Amartey (Leicester Metropolis) and Thomas Partey (Arsenal) and Jordan Ayew (Crystal Palace) within the Ghana squad. Like Lamptey, Athletic Bilbao’s Inaki Williams additionally declared for Ghana in current months on the behest of his grandad and varied Ghanaian officers. The striker’s mother and father crossed the Sahara in quest of a brand new life in Spain when “Kweku” was nonetheless in his mom’s womb. Curiously, Inaki’s youthful brother Nico got here on as a sub for Spain of their demolition of Costa Rica yesterday.

Anyway, sufficient introductory chat – kick-off in Doha is at 4pm (GMT) however keep tuned within the meantime for workforce information and build-up.

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